It’s December, so it’s time to heed the call of the annual Blockheads Xmas show in London.
Support comes from Harun Kotch, a singer songwriter who accompanies himself on guitar. It’s a short set of wistful songs that gets polite applause at the end. It must be hard to fill a Blockheads support slot in front of their die hard fans so good effort.
If there’s one gig that properly marks the start of the festive season, then it’s the witty lyricism and Funk fuelled Rock n Roll antics of one of the best bands in Britain.
Derek The Drawer is now comfortably settled in to the role of front man, delivering the old Ian Dury songs in his own unique style while making the newer compositions his own. He’s part bumbling college lecturer and part loveable Uncle, roguish and silly in equal measure.
The litany of classic songs is well established, so we get to hear “If I Was With A Woman”, “Wake Up”, “What A Waste”, “Inbetweenies”, “Clever Trevor”, “Billericay Dixie”, “Reasons To Be Cheerful”, “Sweet Gene Vincent”, “Hit Me With Your Rhythm Stick” and of course “Blockheads”.
All the well known songs prompt enthusiastic singalongs from the Blockhead faithful, and all the musicians give assured, confident and masterful performances. Chaz Jankel (guitar and keyboards), Norman Watt-Roy (bass monster), Johnny Turnbull (guitar) and Gilad Atzmon (sax and clarinet) all take great solos and never stop joking amongst themselves, clearly still having fun after 40 years on the road.
A great time is always guaranteed at a Blockheads show, even if you’re not familiar with the songs the catchy tunes and clever lyricism clearly shine through.
They’ve got a Kickstarter campaign running to raise funds for a documentary called “Beyond The Call Of Dury” that will tell the definitive story of the band. With a band this good, who have played on a variety of songs for lots of other musicians over the years, that will be a story worth telling.