Sunday, April 01, 2007

Camera Obscura

Aah, due to continuing healthy sales of their third long player, Let's Get Out of this Country, this Friday saw me get a second chance this album to see the wonderful Camera Obscura play in Aberdeen, this time graduating from The Tunnels to the above-ground Lemon Tree.

What a pleasant time it was, a fine happy atmosphere from all present as would be expected from the Twee Indie demographic. Support was from 'Scura friend Ned Collette hailing all the way from Melbourne. Brooding, padding, haunting guitar with a fine voice to match. Just imagine, his myspace page lists Robert Wyatt and George Orwell as some of his principle influences... Ned treated us to a short series of his longer songs, as he said 'Aberdeen seemed like a long song kinda place'. I'm not sure what that means, but he's right! A fine live event, but I did wonder how much I would play the record. Maybe a lot, but I wasn't moved to invest in finding out.

After a refreshingly short break, The 'Scura were steeping onto the stage, Carey and Tracy Anne in classy 60's vintage, and it was great to see how relaxed and happy they seemed, quite a change from the bustling and more challenging Tunnels venue. Standing but a metre or two away, the good vibes were infectious as they opened with Come Back Margaret and old super-favourite Suspended from Class from second LP Underachievers Please Try Harder. They were even interactive enough to ask for more light to be thrown onto the crowd, joking that it was nice to see so many people after the previous night in Inverness, playing to one man and his canine!

The set continued with the crowd around getting bouncier, new (or old obscure) song Lemon Juice and Paper Cuts sounding fine and soon moving on to a fantastic Keep It Clean, a mellow Books Written For Girls (at one point changing the line 'You see through this perfect smile' to 'They talk through this perfect song' in reference to the usual bar limpets still chatting away!) and a crowd-pleasing Hey Lloyd. A fine run including If Looks Could Kill, Let's Get Out Of This Country and Teenager lead to the closer, Razzle Dazzle Rose with an amazing crescendo of noise that left the crowd in rapture.

The video to 'Hey Lloyd, I'm Ready to be Heartbroken':

The video to 'Let's Get Out of this Country':

After a performance as good as that, an encore was guaranteed and the band came back with Eighties Fan, a favourite from their debut, Biggest Bluest Hi-Fi, that had consistently been asked for throughout their set. Having met all our expectations, The 'Scura were finally allowed to leave, and did so to prolonged applause and cheering. From the shy band that peered into our consciousness through the days of Peel, Camera Obscura now have the appearance of a band totally at ease with themselves, and this can only mean good things for future releases. Bring them on!

I got a playlist revealing the bands
nicknames for their own songs!

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Blogger Lisa Rullsenberg said...

That explains the text (and my apologies for not replying sooner!)

Sounds as if it was a great night - probably benefits from a large enough venue to actually (a) see the band and (b) enjoy the band.

Am very envious!

Your set list sounds and looks wicked! What did you do for that?!

2 April 2007 at 20:32  
Blogger J.J said...

Reidski and I will be seeing them again in camden in a couple of weeks, and I can't wait...what a great band and thanks for the review.

2 April 2007 at 20:58  
Blogger George Walks said...

Lisa - I did nothing at all but place myself well (although I would have submitted to many a thing if asked!). I actually almost forgot about trying to get one but at the end some guy came along and took up Tracy Anne's, so I just reached over and grabbed Carey's. I was very happy indeed to see that it was such a personalised version!!

JJ - you will not be disappointed, they are so on form!

3 April 2007 at 16:42  

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