Monday, May 19, 2014

Abandonees in the Limelight of Limbo,

Mainstream radio has been in a desperate plight for decades now and I blame it completely for my experience last week. I was alerted to the event in question by a circular email, ‘London-based seven-piece, Revere’ were due to be playing at the Lemon Tree. As someone who has always been interested in mini-orchestra pop bands, I was immediately inclined to look them up and I padded ‘Revere 6music’ into Google. I found that they were given airplay by Tom Robinson and Steve Lamacq, furthermore, they sounded decent on YouTube. The only problem was that I might have been the only person who went through these simple steps.

On the evening, I chose to roll up at the time instructed by the band on Twitter. They were still part of the support act’s audience at that time and very much a large percentage of it. The support act, Daniel Mutch, finished up with a Ben Howard cover. As he exited stage, the audience might have reached its evening high of 25.

I thought Revere were great, I really liked them. Their cello and trumpet add crest to their waves of shimmering guitars and drums. Some songs were rousing, some were poignant. Their set was varied and they definitely had more depth than your Hard-fis and Editors. I received value for my £7.70.

The most galling part, was just that. I felt sorry for the band; for such a great performance, they’d surely have made a loss. Travel, accommodation and food amount to more than must have been collected. There was tangible awkwardness to being the audience, but we were the ones who turned up, we weren’t the ones to blame.

My feeling is that the venue must be able to collude with the local radio network to avoid situations like that occurring. Of course, the tinpot local radio must adhere to their playlist but what if they were to accept a minor sum from the music venue to drip feed a few tunes by the artist in question in the lead up to the event and read a few words. The tinpot local receives the equivalent to an advertising fee, their only outlay is a few quid in downloading the records online and then a few pence in royalties (that fee is merely going to the touring band rather than, say, Elton John). The venue should then recover its outlay in extra advertising via ticket sales and drinks. If the tinpot local continues with Lionel Richie then the loop doesn’t start nor end, the rich get richer and the poor become poorer. Where does Revere's cover of 'Enjoy the Silence' fit in?

I ran away before any encore, I didn’t think they’d deem the nine-strong crowd worthy of it. I think I was wrong, nine is the magic number and if forming a gang, then nine is the number of members where happiness is optimum, unless the gang is a band trying to make a living from music.


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