It has been a long, long time since my last gig review. As this blog is mostly professional now, this is perhaps not such a bad thing. I did half write a review of Roy Harper and Joanna Newsome in Sept last year, but it never got posted. Don’t think I have been to gig since then. Still onwards.

I’ve been a fan of June Tabor for a long time, particularly her album with Martin Simpson even if it does have terrible cover art. Despite this, and the fact that she lives pretty close to my home town, I’ve never seen her live. Her music is dark and eclectic, her voice rich. Combined with the Oysterband’s tendency to do strange adaptations folk-style it was destined to be an interesting gig. The music is something like gothic folk if that is not a contradiction in terms. While singing, June Tabor comes as a foreboding presence on stage. Between songs though, she’s entertaining, witty and light, which was a bit of a relief.

The gig was fantastic. Her voice is as excellent live as on record, with adding prescence. She adds to the music by, erm, explaining what it is all about (this can be something of a problem otherwise). The evening was well managed, moving from gentle and quieter music to end-of-evening barnstormers. It was good to be listening to live music again.

But one thing I didn’t understand. Why does Ray Cooper stand on a box while playing bass? He’s already the tallest.


  1. Caz White says:

    Ray has been standing on a prototype silent monitor which works by transmitting vibrations through your bones. He says “I use it mostly for bass and kick drum and it gives the sensation I’m playing in front of a huge PA. Clever stuff and I love it, it’ll be great in the studio too.” It all began with Oysterband’s drumer and sound engineer, Dil Davies and Tim Porter, inventing an entirely new form of silent monitoring for drummers which has been in production for a year or so and is selling to drummers – including some household names – all over the world, many of whom say they now wouldn’t play without it. The plate for bass players is the next thing in the pipeline:

  2. Phil Lord says:

    I never expected to get a reply from someone on this one! I did occur to me that it might be a monitor, but I have seen one before. Good idea.

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