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Blog: A PopArt Christmas

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Sunday early evening found me STRIDING through Islington, taking the long walk from Angel to The Hope & Anchor - due to a) "essential maintenance work" on loads of the tube and b) wanting to find a curry house for later - in order to attend our gig at the PopArt Christmas DO.

I arrived to find large amounts of PopArt chaps in attendance, watching a band who, to mine eyes, didn't seem to be very CHRISTMASSY. That will be as close as I'm going to get to a REVIEW, but even that much criticism made me feel bad for thinking it.

However, soon The Validators arrived, or at least 75% of them, with Emma not attending this time, and we went downstairs to find the other band had finished... and taken the kick pedal for the bass drum with them! Suddenly i felt slightly JUSTIFIED in my unchristmassy thoughts! There was PANIC as the room was SCOURED for replacement pedals, with NONE to be found. Tim was DESPONDENT, not least because this was going to be our last band gig for a very long time (more news on THAT later in the week). "What a way to go out!" he said, looking full of WOE and DESPAIR. "Might as well have a drink..." he said, GLUMLY.

We went upstairs to do the setlist where he cheered up a bit, largely due to us PRODDING him with HILARITY STICKS, and we were soon back downstairs to find a WEALTH of delightful people, including Team Papermint and Helen from Helen Llewelyn Product 19, had arrived. Then we did THIS:
  • Give Us Kiss (for Christmas)
  • My Boss Was In An Indie Band Once
  • We Are The Giant Robots
  • Being Happy Doesn't Make You Stupid
  • Leave My Brother Alone
  • Do The Indie Kid
  • The Advent Calendar Of FACT
  • The Lesson Of The Smiths
  • Easily Impressed

  • It all seemed to go rather well - you could feel the lack of bass drum on some songs more than others, and Tim MANFULLY filled in for it with Other Drums. It felt a bit strange (and the sound mix wobbled a bit throughout, which added to the oddness) but I have to say I had a WHALE of a time. I'd been BADGERING everyone to do a version of Little Drummer Boy/Peace On Earth by Bowie and Bing, and even though I was eventually OUTVOTED on that one things did still carry on in a MEGA FESTIVE way - The Advent Calendar Of FACT ESPECIALLY sounded GRATE. It's one of my favourite songs that I've written EVER, it really is, I wish we could do it more often!

    There was also a fantastic singalong in Being Happy Doesn't Make You Stupid, a LOT of discussion of setlists and Transformers Advent Calendars (I was extremely pleased to get such a HORRIFIED Mass Intake Of Breath when I said "it's got 25 doors"!) and a great deal of JIGGING ABOUT. It was a heckload of festive fun, in fact!

    With that done we had to say some pretty SWIFT goodbyes, although not all were fast enough - I went over to say cheerio to Helen from HLP19 only to find her onstage, ready to take part in "Deal Of Snow Deal" - I waved goodbye and then EVERYONE onstage turned and waved. It was lovely!

    As INDEED was the reason for our early exit - The Traditional Validators Christmas Curry, which was DELICIOUS. We discussed the Implications of our forthcoming HIATUS in some varied detail and, mostly, had a RIGHT old LARF. Only the addition of CRACKERS and HATS could have made the Yuletide any jollier and it was a much cheered group of Validators who parted company an hour or so later, me to take the walk down to Angel, them to FLY up the motorway to their Midland Homes. It may not have been the most spectacularly Musically Easy gig to have as our Last Gig For Quite A While, but it ended up being a LOVELY evening all the same!

    posted 14/12/2009 by MJ Hibbett

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