Review: Damon & Naomi at the Kings Head
Arrived at the venue at 8:30 and met Damon outside - he told us they weren’t to be on stage until 10:30 - a bit late for us folk with kids! We wandered around Crouch End for half an hour and then squuezed into the low ceilinged and awkwardly laid out venue. Support was from King Creosote and other members of “The Fence Collective” (http://www.fencerecords.com/index.htm). and was pretty good. A large chunk fo the crowd were there to see them (as I think they were originally headlining until Damon & Naomi were put on the bill).
I had to dive out in the break to ring the babysitter and tell him we’d be a bit later than anticipated - as I got back in the band had taken the stage and the venue was, while still full, a little more comfortable and a little less talky - Damon, Naomi, Kurihara, Greg Kelley (trumpet) and Bhob Rainey (sax).
The sound was a little murky but improved as the show went on (or as our ears became accustomed to it). A few old (“Turn of the Century”, Tim Buckley’s “Song to the Siren”) a few new (“Beautiful Close Double”, “Araca Azul/The Earth is Blue”, “Ueno Station” and a very
lovely “A Second Life”), and one really old (Blue Thunder - in an arrangement quite a long way removed from Galaxie 500 - but a joy to hear - and to hear Naomi doing that bassline - I was briefly alone and they were playing it “for me”).
One encore, “Love” by The Jacks, and that was it. I said “Hi” and “Thanks for Blue Thunder” to Damon, very hastily shook Naomi’s hand while she had stuff in it!, and bolted home to relieve the babysitter.
To be honest I was a bit worried by the venue (the sound, the talking, the bloody great pillar in the way) but Damon & Naomi pulled off another great show…it might have been better if it had been a better venue (maybe one with a real stage!) and if I wasn’t worrying about keeping the babysitter up too late. But not much better.
They’ve got such a back catalogue that there were a hatful of songs I really missed (“New York City”, “…Mt. Washington”, “Tour of the World”)…but I guess I have to forgive them that).