Monday, 20 September 2010

Adam Green @ The Sugarmill 14th September 2010

Review by Sian Eardley

Bloody Hell! What an extraordinarily-fabulous-spectacularly and delightfully top-notch, spiffing, and tickety-boo evening the Adam Green performance of tonight was.

Stoke support act: ‘The Fragrant Vagrants’ blew me away from walking through the door, let alone the headline act. Where have this band been hiding? Stoke shows us their defiance in delivering quality indie rock of a high caliber; the kind we’ve been crying out for – for so long, hopefully to result in their own show debut soon! Tonight was destined to be superb anyway, even the long-standing and dull Paramore backing CD used for the intermissions, had been put aside for some Old School Biffy Clyro and The Spinto Band. As we would say here: ‘Mint.

But anyway, we digress from the fantastical operetta of tonight, courtesy of New York lovin’, and ‘Strokes’ buddy Adam Green; himself looking somewhat of a cross between Julian Casablancas and Albert Hammond Jr. He truly graced the ‘cultural part of Stoke’ with a show like no other – I’d go as far to say as like no other on this earth.

With a seductively instrumental opening; resonating NYC cool with a sleek edge of Jazz properly placed amongst the indie streets of the Big Apple’s Soho, the plodding tunes showed he’s ‘got the funk’. In fact, the plunky, plonky ‘Buddy Bradley’ oozed reminiscences of the ‘Old Gregg’ episode of The Mighty Boosh (you know the one!), where Green scooped up the funk and made pure love to it right there on the stage. Imagine that for a scene… then juxtaposed with the bold, resonating, vocals similar to Ian Curtis along with his sporadic shuffles, further progressing into Vic Reeve’s fashion of pub singing, to eventually elude into a more serious ‘Richard Cheese’ protégé, and you’ve pretty much got a good idea of how tonight went down.

The concept of Adam Green certainly boggles the mind as a ravishing rollercoaster ride of stand-up, cabaret, drunken social engagement and musical talent; I had likened it to a night in Baz Luhrman’s visualization of ‘The Moulin Rouge’. The songs themselves varied into a magnificent array, exploding as a cosmic love affair with the night, right from the slap-bassing start, to the acoustically breath-taking mid set which marveled the crowds (like they weren’t already bowled over enough), transgressing to the more sadistic side of Green, with his later songs of “Carolina’ whose ‘breasts taste just like breakfast’, the short and sweet ‘Baby’s gonna die tonight’, and the rather degrading Jessica’, slating Miss. Simpson!’

It’s hard to pinpoint any particular highlight of the performance, as the delectable evening comprised of a perfect host, non-stop entertainment, and our own piece of Indie Americana for sampling. However, it has to be said that his serving of ‘Morning after Midnight’ and ‘Emily’ (note: both not off his current album ‘Minor Love’, but to be found on his older catalogues), were stunning. This man can wail!

Flinging out some of his old works from times as ‘The Moldy Peaches’, it was tantalizing to be in a ‘real’ music-loving crowd in awe of these guys who’d you’d just want to party with to have a damn good time, and this is exactly what they delivered. Whether his straw hat was on or his top was off – an orgasmic, side-splitting and pleasurable musical experience was had.

If you’re up, if you’re down, you can’t help but be moved by the presence of Green – guaranteed to be lifted by his musical genius; presenting itself humorously, but gaining validity for it’s very ‘real’ approach at lyrics and matters, opposed to the many pretentious offerings by bands today, who merely tweak on the heartstrings of angry teenage girls.

So if you’re bag, baby, ideally consists of a Lou Reed sound, a Jeff Healey bluesy rock-house vibe, brought to you by apparitions of Howard Moon and Vince Noir; prepare yourself for a magical night with Adam Green, who’ll sing, talk drugs (specifically ‘Special K’) with you, gamble and downright charm the pants off you.

10/10 – The finest night in a very long time indeed.

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