Johny Foreigner

posted 6 Jun 2009, 08:37 by The Editor   [ updated 6 Jun 2009, 10:33 ]
Fibbers, York 23rd May 2009


It’s my first assignment for Sleep on the Left and I’m off to a good start by totally missing Copy Haho. I did have the decency to have a quick peek at their MySpace though and I like what I heard, so next time the boys are out and about York way I’ll try and make the effort to check them out. 

Anyway, I’m safely in Fibbers in time to see west midlands boys Calories do their thing. And quite a good thing it is too. This power-trio remind me a bit of Husker Du, but maybe I just think that because the bass player looks a bit like a young Bob Mould to my eyes. Either way the songs come thick and fast with hooks aplenty. Although they don’t bring anything particularly new to the post-punk/hardcore table they do it well and have fun doing it. Songs like “Drink the Potion” and “Adventuring” are well-crafted gems and hit all the right spots with some fast guitar action and sing-along choruses. There’s also time for some entertaining between-song-banter. And also during-song-banter, as the boys have to explain the concept of the false stop to some of the young Fibbers audience who are a bit enthusiastic with their applause mid-song. So after what seems like not very long, Calories finish off and clear the stage for Johnny Foreigner.

I’m usually easily impressed by a band with an attractive girl covering bass duties, (anyone remember JJ72?) but Johnny Foreigner didn’t really hit the spot. The fresh-faced Fibbers crowd seemed to be enjoying the show, but were maybe a bit too reserved for the liking of front man Alexei who told them their restrained demeanour reminded him of a visit to granddad’s house. Johnny Foreigner’s shouty vocals and muddy guitar sound became tired pretty quickly to my ears. My interest was aroused briefly when there was a bit of instrument swapping between drummer Junior, bass player Kelly and someone appearing from backstage. The resulting tune, with two guitars filling out the sound nicely, had a bit of a post-rock feel too it. It was quickly back to business as usual though with more throwaway songs before they called it a day at 10:45 and didn’t bother with an encore.


Nick Harmer

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