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The Jazz Butcher Press whisperinandhollerin
October 26, 2019
Gig details: 2019-10-26
whisperinandhollerin David J Haskins and Pat Fish, Live at the M.O.T.H. Club Hackney (Hackney, London, England)
October 26, 2019
Credit: simonovitch

This is a night put on by Glass Modern at to give it it's full title The Memorable Order Of Tin Hats Club at The General Browning Old Trades Hall in Valette Street Hackney and the show is in the Reg Miller Memorial Hall, which is a brilliant glitter bedecked room that also has a Royal Box where the merch stall is set up as well as all sorts of militaria on the walls which somehow makes it seem like the perfect place for David J to play on his current tour promoting his new solo album Missive To An Angel From The Halls Of Infamy And Allure that's out now on Glass Modern and was mainly recorded in Prague with David's current Czech solo band.

This evening was one of those when London's transport system and roads went a bit mad so that my journey that should have just been one train ride turned into 4 trains and bus the last of which dropped me in Graham Road that for me brought back memories of Saturdays in the very early 70's spent at my uncle's barbers and Hairdressers and being sent out onto Graham Road to buy cigarettes and sweets and of course back then they would serve a 6 year old kid with ciggies. So I was already in full on nostalgia mode before I got into the M.O.T.H. Club thankfully still in time to see all of Pat Fish's opening set for one of the musicians who used to be in The Jazz Butcher with him back in the 80's when they were all on Glass records.

Pat was playing solo on his Gretsch Electromatic he opened with Keeping The Curtains Closed form the Fishcoteque album and in the glitter bedecked stage and hall he was in going Fishco made sense it was either that or a glitter rock special but either way a perfect start to his set. We then got a proper obscurity with a version of Baltic that was only available as the bonus track on Waiting For The Love Bus and it sounded great with some very cool lyrics and great to hear it played live.

We then got a nice slow and yet still funky version of She's On Drugs that was the first song that made the actor Marc Warren pries himself off the wall he was leaning on for a closer listen. Pat then once again related the story of his lodgers answer to the question of what was the last car you saw being torched which of course was Melanie Hargreaves Fathers Jaguar and it's quite a tale and it seemed right to sing it here considering how often there used to be burnt out cars on Morning Lane round the corner from the M.O.T.H. club in the 70's.

It being a Saturday night of course Pat sang Big Saturday and about a third of the way through one of the other fans sashayed onto the dance floor and started tap dancing and doing percussion on his arms and legs with his hands it was a great accompaniment that continued for part of The Human Jungle as well and well it's long over due for Pat to go tap although he generally only wants to know about the beer taps, we were certainly in a cool and trendy part of that human Jungle a great version.

Pat then closed his set with his latest song about life's great miseries and coming out the other side of his cancer scare with the rather doleful Never Give Up that's full of good advice and a little bit of hope that things may once again seem ok.

After the break it was time for David J Haskins and his two Czech accompanists Karel Holas on Violin and Robert Vasicek to bring the glitter to the bands dark toned music and after a false start while they sorted some small technical issues they opened with the wonderfully morbid Not Long For This World with the Violin and Piano starkly backing David as he brought this description of a funeral to life.

I Hear Only Silence now was similarly sparse and beautiful with some nice accentuating of the vocals by the violin as David tried to quench his thirst. David then picked up his acoustic guitar for The Auteur a wonderfully stark tale from his last Solo album and the piano and acoustic guitar worked beautifully to help make this song feel like the soundtrack to the Auteurs finest work.

Clandestine Valentine was preceded by a cool introduction from David and then the song slowly unfolded as this story of love with someone you can't be with all the time was made to feel beguiling and just how things must be sometimes.

Blue Eyes in The Green Room is every bit as good a song as it is a song title and a great little tale of meeting the gaze of someone across a room and being enamored of them and then sitting and going on and on about them once you've had a drink or two more than you should have.

Copper Level 7 is a song that should probably be played back to back with Type O Negatives Black No 1 as "goth" songs about hair dye colors and of course all sorts of other stuff in both cases and with a smart re-mix or two this will no doubt turn into a floor filler a real highlight.

David then went way back to one of his earliest solo albums made if my memories anywhere near right in between Bauhaus ending for the first time and Love And Money really getting going yes it was time for some Crocodile Tears And The Velvet Cosh to help lift everyone's blue mood although almost everyone was looking happy apart from Marc Warren who was concentrating so much on filming the whole show on his phone that he didn't seem to be able to show any emotion as to how great the music he was filming was.

Then it was time to dig into the roots of the blues and rock and roll with Feel Like Robert Johnson At The Three Forks Saloon that's a nice evocation of the spirits that were chasing poor Robert into his very early grave and seemed apt to be sung in a room with lots of memorials to people who died too soon.

David kept the feel of memorializing the greats with Where Were You The Day David Bowie Died that allowed David to let go of just how traumatic it was when one of his main idols left the stage for the last time and as the first time I ever really connected to David J's music was through Bauhaus covering Ziggy Stardust I have to say this really did work and was really heartfelt and a beautiful tribute to a real musical hero.

For the third part of the tributes to the fallen David put his guitar down all the better to emote properly on Spalding Gray Can't Swim and to make sure we knew exactly what it was about Spalding that connects to us, a cool song. The Star Standing was coated in a sparse beauty by Karel and Robert.

Candy On The Cross took us back to the bad old good old days when Kings Cross was a 24/7 den of iniquity and Candy was an old before her time teenage heroin addicted prostitute plying her trade for the next fix on The Cally, as the current austerity really kicks in this song seems rather relevant and I wish that it didn't, a magnificent take on the despair that almost used to seem glamorous back then, only spoilt by the couple sprawled on the floor like a couple of 80's junkies who just couldn't shut up. At the end of the song and while he was tuning his Guitar before playing it again David took the time to tell them to shut up and the woman tried to talk her way out of it claiming they weren't being loud, something most of the rest of us disagreed with very quickly indeed and she eventually and finally managed to shut up so the gig could carry on.

Which wasn't an ideal lead into them singing a song whose title is almost longer than they take to play it as David put it yes Missive To An Angel From The Halls Of Infamy And Allure will never be a song anyone shouts out for but what an great song none the less once the legless lady had shut the fuck up we could all hear it without any added babble.

They then closed with a great version of his old Love And Rockets classic Dog End Of A Day Gone By that works really well with the Violin and piano as David's voice went nice and Deeply goth too that only left everyone cheering for some more.

Of course they came back out and while David could have brought up several ex-band members for the encore we stayed with the trio to ask us Who Killed Mr Moonlight that I hope David will also be singing on Bauhaus' upcoming shows it was darkly magisterial and with the room glittering it felt like the moonlight was in the room with us. David then put his guitar back down and they closed with It Was A Very Good Year that allowed David to give us his best Sinatra croon as Karel and Robert made it sound like your sitting in a restaurant in Prague as the house band effortlessly play the classics to entertain everyone. A great way to end a really good show.
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