All entries for Monday 07 March 2005

March 07, 2005

Battle of the Bands Runners Up Heat

So, after coming second in our heat on Thursday, Protocol played their second ever gig tonight, in the runners-up heat of Battle of the Bands. With no practice in the two days between we were a bit hesitant as to our chances. Matters weren't helped much by a sketchy soundcheck and leaving the disk with all the samples I actually use at home. Being made to run around Rootes field in vest and pants was suggested, but luckily I was able to scab a quick roundtrip to Ealsdon to collect the forgotten disk. Crisis averted! The process of calming frazzled nerves could now begin, and what better way than with beer?

For some strange reason (week 10 deadlines most likely) the Graduate Club was only about half full at the start of the night, which was a little crap as the atmosphere was lacking somewhat compared to that of the previous heats which all sold out to capacity. We were on fourth out of five, so had a while to mentally prepare for the gig. Its actually really difficult to get into the right mindset standing in the crowd watching the other bands thinking "that'll be us up there in a minute". Hence a swiftly called band meeting on th back entrance about nothing in particular, mainly disagreeing as to what number we're going to have after our name, and me being banned from playing congas with a Snarf spatula. I swear they never let me have any fun!

Our set went amazingly well, all things considering. Apparently Gav managed to step on his cable and unplug himself not once but twice, and Rob claims to have screwed up a few bits in the last song.
Having a fully miked up set of congas to play with was a bit worrying for me- despite playing congas with Big Band for over a year, I still suck immensely at them and infact any percussion other than drums. Add to this the fact we'd only practicised for 40 minutes in a full band situation and I was one slightly nervous Pablo.
Okay, so I had them at the heat but they werent miked up that night, so you couldnt hear them anyway- which in a way was brilliant as I didnt have to think about playing something that sounded good and so got to showboat/dance about/headbang for most of the set.

I must say I love playing a sampler in a band, it really is the most piece of piss thing ever (press the right buttons 3 times in a song) yet everyone is always really impressed, generally just by the fact you have one. Its kind of like a racing driver being complemented on how cool his car looks. I'm still trying to perfect the whole Chemical Brothers look of intense concentration whilst fiddling around with knobs and settings when in fact all I'm doing is trying to look busy inbetween playing samples. Love it. Slowly justifying the massive cost of the thing by making me look cool and like a proper musician!

I don't know where we finished overall and I dont really want to know- so we didnt win, so what we still got that far. Where we were placed seems a little irrelevant especially given how bloody good everybody was tonight. And yes, nobody likes to come last, even if its in the semi-final round. I bloody hope we weren't last.
Pink Spider came out as winners- we foresook most of their set for our band meeting, but from what I saw they're a very adept, passionate and entertaining band and whats more they're quality guys to boot. Problem I have is having seen way too many emo/hardcore/metal bands back home (every local gig is bloody emo/hardcore/metal and very rarely anything very far from it) I've grown a little used to and bored of the music, which is a shame as everyone else assures me Pink Spider are amazing. I'm yet to be convinced, but I'd like to be.

Right, time to get some sleep. I may add some more to this, I dunno. Cheers to everyone who came along and likes our band, it means a lot.


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