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Gorky's Zygotic Mynci 6th August 2001 Kings Cross Scala

My conclusion this summer/ Was there was much to much rain/ So I ran off on Monday/ With a pop band from Wales.

It's Mantra Records fifth birthday, and as a 'treat' we all get to stand around for aeons waiting for Gorky's equipment to be set up. At least we have The Delgados playing olde records like 'Psychotic Reaction' by The Count Five, 'Painter Man' by The Creation and The Thirteenth Floor Elevators' 'Slip Inside This House' to keep us entertained. Ho hum… there's a JFK airport luggage sticker on Euros' keyboard case…Oh here they are, Euros in a Ribena tee-shirt.

Tonight, we get to hear plenty of new songs mixed with a few older favourites. The out and out folk of 'The Blue Trees' is tempered with some of the eccentricities of old, crazed keyboard wibbling and a fair dollop of country. It all sounds magical as ever.

Spanish dance troupe
The first song has Teardrop Explodes trumpets courtesy of a mini brass section who drift in and out throughout the evening. The third song features the guitarist singing, though not with the same sweet delicacy that Euros has. Mind you, to hear Euros squawking 'One, two, three, four. One, two, three, four' during 'Miss Trudy' ('you're a very special lady' arf!) you'd never guess it. As he harmonises quietly with Megan who presses her violin to her ear to hear herself, we strain our ears against the unholy jabbering that rises from people at the back. Occasionally, Euros glances furiously at the noisy steamy blasts of dry ice emerging over his head. Gorky's aren't really a dry ice band, especially when the noise it makes is louder than they are. They do, however, have some splendid swirly back projections that look like the ones Spacemen 3 used to have. In this situation they're more soothing than menacingly psychedelic, though.
We're snapped out of our pastoral reverie by a yelpy (Woo!)'Poodle Rockin' after which someone shrieks, 'I love you!' only for someone else to up the ante, 'I love you more!'

Throughout there are increasingly desperate pleas for 'Patio Song'. Instead we get more new songs of violin and piano melancholy, of a seven (count 'em!) note drone becoming a Cossack whirligig of keyboard hammering madness, of a Broadcast-like stately drone and a song that spins faster into a psychedelic hoe-down. There is definitely a bit of drone-rock creeping in here and there, but with their lovely country tunes, Gorky's would be a great Celidh band. I can just imagine doing 'Strip The Willow' to 'Fresher Than The Sweetness In Water'.

There is 'Desolation Blues', 'Spanish Dance Troupe', 'This Summer's Been Good From The Start', 'Faraway Eyes' and (one of my faves) 'Sweet Johnny' with Euros' fantastic headbanging double keyboard wig out in the middle. Still no 'Patio Song' though and one desperate girl shouts 'I'll do anything!' to which Euros mock sternly replies, 'There's no need to lower the tone. It's been a nice day out for us all and you turn it to filth.' In the end, they return three times for encores. Gorky's, with thees Welsh country, folk, wibble, drone, barn-dancin' pop magic you are truly spoiling us. Still no 'Patio Song', mind.

Strip the willow
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