The Slits, Electrowerkz
It was a real rock venue- converted warehouse probably, with hideous shared toilets (the sort you can imagine at the beginning of the evening what they'll look like at the end of the evening, i.e. very wet) and enough UV lighting to give us all dandruff.
I don't think Ari was very impressed with the venue but she's a professional and once her sense of humour kicked in, she was off. The band were rockin' (punkin'? dreadin'?)- much tighter than at Selfridges, which is not surprising because they have played and rehearsed more- they are a proper band now, and this must be due to Ari and Tessa's attitude of including their new members properly, right from the start. Ari introduced the new guitarists with great good humour- Adele- 'very quiet but she's very dangerous'- Nadya- 'she's a serious bitch'- (she's going to be Doctor No soon).
By the time they got to New Town, you realised what a really great vocalist Ari is. She's not just a plain 'singer'- she does rhythm stuff with her voice too, but most importantly she does what she always used to do with the Slits- somehow she makes a whole atmosphere with the way she uses those vocal chords and it makes you want to just scream along!
She passed the mic round to the band one by one, getting them all to sing bits of their favourite songs- when she got to Tessa, Tessa just smiled beatifically. She just looked incredibly happy. The bass sound up front was really good and Tessa is a real groovemistress, a groovemistress extraordinaire. It made me want to start playing bass again but I know I couldn't get anywhere near it! Then Ari took the register of who was there, reading the names off the guest list ('plus one of course, Mark Moore's not here and he's going to get a whupping!').
Their new drummer, Anna, is lighting fast, one of those drummers that is fascinating to watch. She's really slender and has a very boyish haircut, and has a really clipped style of drumming but still manages to swing. Lucky the Slits have got her- I can imagine a lot of people trying to steal her but I can't imagine her wanting to do anything else.
Ari gave a camera to a 'plus-one' in the crowd, 'Get some good shots for Jamaica!'
The whole thing was really informal (apart from the music which was as cool as anything). Adele went to relieve herself halfway thru: ' One soldier missing in action!' and when she came back: 'Did you do a pee? You can do it on stage next time like I do!'
Shoplifting was fantastically aggressive, lost of screaming. And then I just stopped writing, and enjoyed the music!!!
What else do I remember this morning?
Some beautiful harmonies- yes, beautiful, the Slits! And inspiration- nobody else makes music like this, nobody ever has been as inventive as the Slits, and to see it live with all that energy and good feeling coming from the stage, is the BEST NIGHT OUT YOU CAN POSSIBLY HAVE!
I'm doing an interview with them tomorrow for Resonance FM- it will be broadcast later this month I hope, watch this space.
Also, apologies for any mis-spellings, I literally can not see them at all!!