Saturday 23 July 2011

Belle and Sebastian live in 1997

Belle and Sebastian were great live in 1996 - their first London headline gig at the Borderline, they seemed excited to be playing, and were messing about (between songs, one of them played Smoke On The Water on a kazoo to much merriment on and off stage). A few days before, supporting Tindersticks at the ICA, Stuart Murdoch spotted Lawrence in the audience and changed a lot of the lyrics to Felt song titles and lyrics.

Come 1997, they were increasingly diffident on stage. This show from August 2 1997 presented a more raggedy band than the year before. They'd played a good gig the previous night in London, but this period marked the start of an unpredictable gigging band (who would keep crowds waiting for an hour before begrudingly coming onstage; who once kept a crowd waiting for an hour and a half before deciding they couldn't play because Isobel had a tickly throat).

The audience was a little lively at this Oxford gig and the heckles came perhaps as much through frustration with the band as with the excess alcohol consumed waiting for the band to play.

Still, if you're prepared to sit through some woman shouting "Judy!" a lot and some bloke shouting what he thought was funny (but wasn't) then some of this gig sounds great.

My main memory is my flatmate not being able to collect the tickets he'd booked on his credit card because the signature had rubbed off from being in his pocket (he refused to use a wallet as for some bizarre reason he didn't trust people who used wallets). We had to pay in cash, leaving us totally broke in the venue. Oxford indiepop legend and millionaire car designer Sir Greg Webster stepped up and loaned my flatmate beer money for the night. That debt is still outstanding. Thanks, Greg.

No comments:

Post a Comment