If there was ever a band that has suffered from the ‘albatross round the neck’ syndrome, of having a massive commercial hit coupled with the general public not having the first clue about any other music from your back catalogue then The Dandy Warhols fit the description to a tee. Fortunately at the Rescue rooms in Nottingham on Tuesday, 1st July, we had an audience a bit more discerning as well as being, shall we say, ‘a little more advanced in years,’ thus allowing the full appreciation of their two decades of output. The track in question has been used to sell phones, enliven dull films and get party’s swinging all over the globe. What are you going to put on at midnight when the temperature and the mood are on the upsurge? Hail to the fucking thief? Or one of Jason Pierce’s (Spiritualized) drug fuelled dirges? No you are going to bang on “Boho” (as flippantly described on the stage set list) and start the boogie-woogie action.
The evening had started with a wonderful support set by the Dark Horses, comprising a short but brash performance, whose own take on the evidently culturally significant psych genre was both refreshing and vibrant, and it’s always good to see a guy on stage with a cowboy hat on (more was to come from that direction later).
The venue was almost full for the Dark Horses set and by the time the ‘Dandies’ appeared it was elbow room only as they launched into a riff-tastic version of “Mohammed” with singer Courtney Taylor-Taylor bent double, arching in to the peel slowly and see moniker on the bass drum. The quirky pop of “We used to be friends” was followed by “Boho’s” half-brother, “Not If You Were The Last Junkie On Earth (Heroin Is So Passé)”. The pop classics just kept on coming until a mid-set comedown of “Holding Me Up”, “ Well They’re Gone” and “Sad Vacation”, which were less of a lull and more of a chance to catch a breath for the second half. “Good Morning “ is the kind of stone wall pop classic that Lloyd Cole & The Commotions used to do so well and the new psych bands would throw their toys in the temple for. “Bohemian Like You” was thrown in and the audience’s reaction was no more or less enthusiastic as it was for the other pop gems, followed by “Get Off”, “Godless” and closing with “Boys Better”. The final track saw the re-emergence of the cowboy hat, not being worn this time by the Dark Horses guitarist but by Chris Oley (lead singer of Six-by-Seven), whose six foot-plus, fifteen stone frame with cowboy hat proceeded to do the worst drunken Bez (Happy Mondays) impersonation ever, much to the delight of the crowd and consternation of the band. That enduring image of a party in full swing is the way that The Dandy Warhols have and always will roll.