Updated: Mar 18, 2019
One might think that being of a musically punk/psychobilly leaning, that a band that was the cornerstone of any self-respecting MOD in concert would not be the place to spend an evening, but with age comes wisdom, or so I am told, as does expanding one's musical horizons. Thus is how I find myself at The Lewes Con Club, watching and photographing Who Are You, a Who tribute band hailing from Kent.
Tamborines, mouth organs, wailing guitar solos, driving bass lines and drum beats Keith Moon would have applauded, took us through 2 sets of Who classics. Ranging from rock opera to overdriven generation-defining singles, the Who may not be my cuppa but I can appreciate a great track when I hear one.
The band come on stage, and to a joint fitting of ear plugs by most of the front row audience, Who Are You launched into the first set.
I could go on about fabulous musicianship, not missing a note, etc etc, but I am no Who aficionado. What I did see, and hear was a group of 4 people who knew their craft inside out and knew the band and music they were playing equally well.
As a fellow (albeit rather average) guitarist, I watched as finger defying chords were approached and completed with awe inspiring speed. Townsend himself could not have done (much) better himself.
Mania wasn't overly evident in the drummer's eyes - which I think was a good thing - and the drum kit remained in tact throughout the sets; again, probably a good thing. Neither did the guitarist smash any guitars a la Townsend - I guess this makes the fees for nights go further than just replacing equipment; possibly something The Who should have taken note of. Both, however were self assured in their performances, and I didn't once catch the guitarist watching where to place a finger on the fretboard - admirable in itself.
An hour into the gig and first set is done - a 15 minute break gave everyone a chance for a wee and top up of fluids (now there's space again).
Set 2 contains the majority of my personal favourites - a couple of 60s covers that I didn't even know The Who played Sumertime Blues and Shakin' All Over - I've even written my own song based around the chord sequence of Behind Blue Eyes - we'll say no more about my own particular rendition!
So we round off a very entertaining evening with the core of Who classics; Substitute, My Generation (still hard not to replace a certain word isn't it) and apparently there would be no encore as (according to the lead singer who bares a striking resemblance to a certain lead singer of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark) there's really no need, as the final song is the best Who, if not any band's song ever recorded... Won't Be Fooled Again.
Rounding off a very well received gig, it was left to the lead singer to give this,
'What a fantastic gig, one of our best and most enjoyable ever. A brilliant venue, lovely people. If I lived in Lewes I'd never go anywhere else, great place. Thanks everyone'
A fitting way to end a great Saturday evening, spent in what has fast become my second home - The Lewes Con Club.