Doozer and Funke rock Derby!
I’ve not been to The Hairy Dog in Derby for a year or so – so last night was a first chance to check out their new bigger room rather than the old upstairs venue which now houses a smaller venue and a tattoo studio. The newer main room is a great space – around a 400 capacity, a bar with sound-desk, cloakroom and merch desk with a good sized raised stage. It’s superb set up nestled behind the no-nonsense rock pub out front. I whole heartedly approve.
With car woes continuing I decided not to risk it and took the van, parking up at nearby Abbey Street car park and then it was a short walk to the venue. Outside we found the acts for the evening out front enjoying a drink along with The Famous Artist Birdy Rose too, so we settled down for a natter and a drink. It was a little while before the doors to the back room were opened, so it was nice just to catch up. Gradually other gig goers started to arrive – and soon enough we decamped into the main room, Ella doing a stint on the merch desk for the evening.
Funke was up on stage to introduce Doozer McDooze who opened up the live music – despite being a bit poorly (you could only really tell from his between-song chatter, it sounded like he had a bad throat), he didn’t let it inhibit an energetic and empassioned performance though! I didn’t recognise the song he opened with, I’ll hazard a guess at I Thought We Were Friends. It always amazes me how prolific Dooze is at songwriting, I see him quite frequently and there’s nearly always something in his sets to throw me!
Searching was up next which is definitely a familiar one being a song that we’ve covered, and then it was into Dreams. Whilst there were a lot of familiar faces in the crowd it was nice to watch some of the folk I didn’t know reacting positively. Pirate Captain led into Not Going Back to That which had people smiling and stomping their feet along, it’s an infectious song. The next song involved dropped tuning, I’ve hazarded a guess that it’s called In One Hand and Out the Other before – something most folk can probably relate to when it comes to cash flow!
Help was up next, which is inspired by organisations like CALM (the Campaign Against Living Miserably – surely that’s something we can all get on board with!). Doozer and Birdy had some material from them to distribute on the merch desk too. On a similar theme Panic Attack was up next, and then a new song (to anyone who hasn’t seen Doozer play in Essex) which I didn’t get the name of – so I’ll arbitrarily call it Different Time Different Colour as that was the lyric hook that really grabbed me!
Acapella Fame and Glory was up next – a brave move when you’re feeling under the weather but it went really well including some good crowd singing along! It’s Nice Down Here morphs into Solo Acoustic Guy and back again, leaving anthemic I Don’t Wanna Go Home to finish up the set proper – however, with the crowd clamouring for more and time to do it we had an encore of The Fuck You Dance. An excellent set – Doozer is getting more confident each time I see him lately. He ended up driving back that night – nutter!
After a bit of a break Funke and the Two Tone Baby was up on the stage – he launched into new song Dance Until We Drop – it’s a full on dance-infused banger of a tune, he continues to develop his sound in new and interesting ways, it certainly got the crowd going from the off who’d all moved irresistibly to the front of the stage. Bella’s Kiss was up next before he paused to announce it was going to be a bit of an experimental evening – which makes sense, he’s in the studio next month for his next album so needs to road test new material.
Work All Week isn’t really that new to those of us who’ve seen him a lot in the last few months (indeed, I referenced it at Whitwell over a year ago and describe it as increasingly familiar then!), I imagine it’s probably been reworked since then though! Completely new to me Reshape was up next, it has utterly filthy amounts of beats and bass, and then Fortuna changes the emphasis with a more acoustic feel, then it was back into dance genre – Döppelganger has an almost drum and bass feel, with some uber low frequencies in there verging on ‘brown noise’ – ha!
Nice to Me is of course a much more familiar song, and it was followed up with Genghis Khan which is now forever associated with Rob Bazley. I’m not sure why, maybe he has some hordes ready and waiting to rampage and forge huge empires? It’s an ace song though! The Signal is Cut is another ‘old-new’ song which I really like, then a real strip back for The World will be a Wasteland, just involving guitar and stomp and vocals, a really nice juxtaposition from the usual multi-layered extravaganzas!
I’m Not Well might’ve been one to dedicate to Doozer, considering! It led into Not Enough Bonobo which of course is the traditional closing song – however there was no way the crowd were going to accept no further music, so after some insistence he returned for a rousing encore of 54-46 That’s My Number (with some very lusty crowd participation, hang on, that scans potentially perverted – lusty as in vociferous!) which mashed up into Tainted Love and back again. A brilliant brilliant set, well, a brilliant brilliant pair of sets.
The sound and lights at the venue were tip top. Absolutely superb. Once pack down had finished we headed off on our merry way. Dan stayed over at mine since it’s very partially on the way to Wales where he’s playing tonight, so we ordered some pizza, drank some cider and were entertained by Frankie the cockatiel who was unusually friendly to someone she’d not met before – definitely enhanced by the fact that he was feeding chips to her, in fairness! I’m really looking forward to hearing Funke’s new album when it’s complete!