Where There Were No Doors

Follow your bliss and doors will open where there were no doors before - Joseph Campbell

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Julian H. Cope

Just got back in from seeing Julian Cope at the Festival Hall. He played two sets, separated by a set from US band Comets on Fire. It's probably impossible for me to describe exactly how much the gig rocked without coming round to your house and breaking some of the furniture. To say "it rocked like a bag of bastids" would be overestimating even the renowned capacity to rock of bastids in bags.

That said, it's hard to know precisely how much of the evening's rock was provided by the bands, and how much was provided by my spectacular miscalculation of the quantity of cannabis chocolate constituting "a decent enough dose". And of course, there was also the point - quite early in the evening - when I mistakenly assumed the cannabis had reached it's apex, and decided it'd be a good idea to eat a few mushrooms.

As indeed it turned out to be. A damn good idea.

Comets on Fire were like what would have happened if Credence Clearwater Revival had discovered speed instead of pot. And I can't begin to tell you how good a thing this turns out to be. Let anyone who doubts the transcendent power of guitar music be placed into a small venue with Comets on Fire and they shall be reborn. You get the feeling they watch the Bill Hicks "Play from your Fucking Heart!" bit before coming on stage.

I kept getting distracted by gorgeous women. And the incongruity of a bloke with his hand in a wooden box stood off on one side of the stage.

The last 8 or 9 hours of the gig was Copey's second set. Just one long guitar-drenched fractal haze of gorgeous women, thundering rock, blasphemy and Reynard the Fox pissing in a German helmet. Or something. It was fucking weird anyway.

Which is what you want from your Julian Cope gigs. At the very least.

The set was heavy on his recent music... as well it should be. Plenty from the new Citizen Cain'd album (which I've not gotten round to yet), as well as lots of the Brain Donor and LAMF stuff. No bad thing. Well... I say "lots". To be honest, I'm not the best judge of that.

It really is all a bit of a haze, so you're fooling yourself if you expect a proper review or anything. By the time Comets on Fire had left the stage, I was just about as wankered as it's possible to be in a place like the Festie Hall and still have it be all pleasant and groovy.

I stood on the footbridge in the cold for an hour or so after the gig... being a little too spaced to deal with the tube and way too spaced to deal with the whole post-gig, back-stage, drinking thing. Exactly spaced enough, in fact, to not notice an hour passing as I watched the lights of London across the Thames.


Blogger L said...

I love your description-- I almost feel like I was actually there, and of course I now want to go around breaking people's furniture.

22/1/05 23:32  
Blogger Stoatie said...

You're right, he truly did rock more than should be legal for someone whose name is Julian.
Thanks to that pipe of yours in the interval (on top of the Barbelith pissup I'd been to on the way) I was in the perfect state for it by his second set as well.
Comets On Fire- also a big yay. Someone get these guys on the same bill as Acid Mothers Temple. NOW. I don't care if it's Sunday afternoon, just DO IT!!!

23/1/05 14:26  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

(anon is iotar)

Ey up! Want a copy of Comets on Fire's Blue Cathedral album?

24/1/05 08:56  
Blogger Jim Bliss said...

L, I recommend pushing heavy pieces of other people's furniture down long flights of stairs.

Nothing to do with the gig or anything, you understand... just something I recommend doing.

Y'know stoatie... I'd completely forgotten the whole "several pipes" thing that happened at the interval. That may well explain why the second half was that extra bit more vivid than the first. Are you aware, by the way, that Einsturzende Neubauten, Henry Rollins, and Dead Can Dance all have tickets on sale at the moment? You going to any of them?

And as for the Comets On Fire album, iotar... I know that Gyrus has a couple of CDs of their stuff, though to be honest they're not a band I could see myself listening to all that much at home. But I'd definitely go see them play live any time.

24/1/05 17:37  

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