I missed the first couple of songs because of the ludicrous (and not
advertised in advance) 10:15pm curfew, which meant the Hip had been already
playing for 15 minutes when I turned up at 8:50pm! Bizarre. I would have
got there a whole lot earlier but I had to come down from the North and had
tutorials and stuff until about 4:30pm... Anyway I entered the building to
the beautiful sounds of Bobcaygeon, and took my spot right at the end of the
first level balcony and had a fantastic view, being able to see every nuance
of what the band were doing (apart from when Bobby occasionally dissappeared
behind the pillar). The Shepherds Bush Empire really is a great venue, the
sightlines, especially from the bar and the balconies are amazing. Anyway,
here's what they played (I missed the first four songs, I'm guessing Use /
Music / NewO / Darkest?)
Inevitability of Death
Its a Good Life...
At the Hundredth Meridian
The Dire Wolf
Long Time Running
Blow at High Dough
Wonderful show, the band looked really into it.
Random notes: Johnny appears to have some kind of new tribal-like floor tom
that he was hitting quite a lot. The man was on form, throwing in some
crazy fills into Inevitability of Death, and Poets. In several songs (ABAC
and Poets come to mind) he was throwing down some tribal type rhythms when
he usually just does a straight 4/4 beat, sounded great. It seems to be his
new toy and he seems to like it a lot. All he needs now is a gong.
Robbie has a hell of a big effects rack, ranking a bit behind The Edge's
(which is the largest selection of pedals I think I've ever seen in one
place), but he has a lot, including at least 3 wah/volume type pedals. Gord
actually has some kind of pedal for his acoustic as well that he turned on
at the start of Putting Down and off at the end of it, possibly some kind of
audibility pedal! Although you could hear his guitar a little in Good Life
and Dire Wolf as well. Paul seems to have a much smaller pedal rack, mainly
one unit from what I could see. I didn't see any pedals by Gord S but his
area was kind of obscured by the monitors, I assume he must have a fuzz or
something down there. Gord S plays the same bass for the whole show,
downtuning it for songs like ABAC and Gift Shop himself using a tuner on top
of his amp cabinet, I thought he was going to miss the start of Little Bones
tuning back up, but just got there. He especially seemed to be into it,
strutting around, playing off Robbie and singing his harmonies.
For about the first half of ABAC, Paul doesn't play guitar, and just stands
there singing harmonies into his mic, it looks great.
Hundredth Meridian was fantastic, with the Life is Forgetting jam (I hadn't
heard before as I've avoided boots from this tour to not spoil the surprise
of the shows). Gord was going for it, throwing the peacock shape quite a
lot. Inevitability of Death was rocking as well, Gord apologising to the
crowd for a crowd surfer going over the top, and at the end saying something
like "It had to happen..." For the end of Blow, Gord lay on the floor...
the band dragged out the ending a bit which sounded nice. Dire Wolf was
really nice with the harmonies. Long Time Running was serene, although this
was one of the few songs where I noticed myself really missing Chris and
Kate's contribution. They did the massive speed up thing at the end of
Wherewithal, which was a fine end to the show. No second encore though, but
I guess it was to be expected with the curfew.
All in all, from the 80% I saw, it was a great gig. The band looked really
happy the whole time, and the crowd seemed to be pretty appreciative too. I
recorded from Courage onwards, that sounds pretty ok, although for some
reason the minidisc switched off at the end, so I didn't get The
Wherewithal. I've put what I got on computer, and just have to divide it
up, and will then upload to one of the FTPs.