Monday, 31 August 2009

Unlucky Fried Kitten @ The Command House, Chatham

Unlucky Fried Kitten

The Command House - Chatham

30 August 2009

Lee palmer - bass
James palmer - guitar
James Hayward - drums
Andy Export - Vox

Today we were in for a treat. UFK and the revolving door policy they practice had a few more spins than usual, namely James on drums, James on Guitars and Lee on Bass.
This was their first public performance together, so in the words of International rescue, "Anything Can Happen in the Next half hour" and probably will.

What did happen was the first full band performance of UFK for many years. Having witnessed the stripped down version of UFK, (I prefer Andy with clothes on though) the added personnel gave the songs a whole new dimension.

Andy Export came on like some punked up Morris dancer, coupling a nice hat (probably a remnant from his early Morris period) with yellow doc martins. Ian Dury's face beamed from his t shirt, and at times, Andy performed what appeared to be a swaying dance with some nifty footwork, dragging him back from what looked to be a certain fall at the last moment defying “Newton’s laws”.

An excellent crisp compressed guitar sound from "Guitar James" cut through the overcast Chatham day to signal the start of proceedings, Export with some surprisingly nimble footwork found his feet and launched into "People".

A great rendition of "To Whom It May Concern" followed with the immortal last line "How many paranoid schizophrenics can you see in an English Country Sanatorium"

"Made In Russia" sounded great with the growling guitar and slightly traditional Russian arrangement, building momentum until the final refrain...Little Paul McCartney did indeed play in Russia.

Next came an old Martini Slutz (A previous Andy Export fronted band) classic, "Underground Worker" where the amazing mental dexterity of Mr Export enabled him to give vent to an on the spot couplet which included Ben Jones and The Rolling Stones
The man is a legend

Next came ""

A sad melancholic song where love is sought on the “World Wide Web”. It tells of the bleakness and isolation of the "relationship less" and the let down when you find that your ideal date is in fact an aging chain smoker from a popular TV soap opera.

During "", Export decided to extend the stage area and climbed down onto terra firma below. As interesting as this was, I don’t think I was alone in wondering how he would get back onto the stage again. Like a true pro, in a short musical interlude Export placed the mic on stage and legged it across to the stairs at the side of the stage where he sprung up them to be re united with the mic back on stage, in perfect time to finish the song with the final words “Dot Cotton".

I expect him to say that this was all meticulously planned of course...

The set closed with "My Town". UFK songs are nothing but educational of course and the ever helpful Mr Export pointed towards the location of various places like "Gillingham" and "Strood" while singing, therefore pre empting any doubts the audience might have as to their approximate location...Rock and geography always seem fitting bedfellows to me.

All the Jim Jims in this town or should I say all the Jim Jims on My town did exceptionally well...As did Lee on bass.

In all seriousness, UFK (a self confessed POP band) make very wry and witty songs with excellent catchy tunes and can make 8 minutes seem like an eternity ;o)...Andy Export, the songwriter and vocalist, often adds verses spontaneously so you never really know what you are going to get, which I thinks adds to the fun.

Down on one knee (or sometimes both), the singer bares his soul clutching at his chest, eyes skyward. Bemoaning the loss of some eastern European maid or other, like a speech impediment cured Kevin Rowland searching for the lost Soul rebels. Sometimes the drama is quite intense, only with UFK, it may just mean that Andy is looking for his missing contact lens again...

Well done to all at UFK...and not forgetting the ever present and today 5th member of UFK, Rio "Fellini" Fraser who with arms of steel, fortified by Lambert and Butler and the odd Dolly Mixture, tirelessly captures the melee on stage for posterity.

Set List

To whom it may concern
Made in Russia
Underground worker
Life in my town

Review by Reavsey...a UFK Follower ;o