Public Service Broadcasting, particularly by the BBC, is a wonderful thing (see last post) and Public Service Broadcasting are a wonderful band. We’ve been big fans for a few years in our house, watching them grow from a quirky indie band, to festival regulars (I happily missed Dolly Parton to catch them at Glastonbury) now able to fill much bigger venues. Leeds Uni Refectory is steeped in musical history, but is an awful place to watch a gig if you’re under 6ft tall. From halfway back in the hall, Lee (who is 5ft ‘not very much more’) couldn’t see a thing so went forward, weaving her way through the crowd. Ended up a lot closer – but still unable to see much (and half the fun is watching J. Willgoose, Esq. somehow managing to play everything at once). To add insult to injury, the merch desk had no small womens T-shirts to add to her collection – the small mens just doesn’t fit the same……Maybe it’ll shrink in the wash…..all very height-ist.
Support band ‘All we are‘ had a mellow dance sound going on – kept on wanting them to rock out and crescedo but they kept an even keel with groovy bass lines.
For this tour, PSB have expanded the band (all still wearing school teacher tweed jackets and big specs) and expanded the stage set (which now includes a model of Sputnik centre stage). All their crowd communication is still via an electronic BBC 1950’s voice “Yes!” There was a very funny animated video at the start with a story of 2 friends, one who quickly took the odd photo at gigs thereby respecting those around him, and one who took long videos of poor quality on his huge bright phone that annoyed everyone around him and didn’t get any hits when put on YouTube. He eventually dies when rejected by all his friends because of it – “Don’t let this happen to you!”. Their latest LP samples old voice clips from the ‘Race for Space‘ in the 50’s and 60’s and the new stuff blended in seamlessly with the old favourites. ‘Valentina’ (first woman in space) was gorgeous and The Other side brought the house down – goose bumps and holding back the tears as communication is re-establised with Apollo 8……how do they do that!
Their concession to making the big time? For the encore, Wrigglesworth wore a silver tie and J. Willgoose, Esq. a silver Jacket – “I know what you’re thinking – he still has his corduroy trousers on underneath.” I’m intrigued to see what they come up with next. What ever it is – it’ll be worth checking out!
Bob the Chiropodist