Tuesday, February 11, 2003

not having been that good at keeping up with my diary recenty, I feel like a guilty husband who has to return home to tell all. Okay, not that bad but I sympathise with him if he ever thought he had nothing more to say to his wife. Maybe that's what happens when you keep rehearsng without other diversions along the way. But I'm not saying that recent rehearsals have been boring or that any of my enthusiasm has dampened. Nevertheless, I was wondering what I would keep writing about the band and our slow march of practice sessions on this site, what I could say which wouldn't bore you (the hypothetical you) to tears, or worse, which would singularly fail to do justice to the giddy pleasure of being in our band. Despite the fact that we were just rehearsing and not playng live or recording, I haven't been bored. But finding the words to reflect this enthusiasm is very difficult. Maybe I find it easier playing guitar than I do writing? I don't think so, but all the same, where do you go when your diary becomes a weeping wife? Why do the boring keep these things? Why be reminded?

But (there's a but), there has been some news. So now I get to confess all, and finally write something interesting.

First (and best), Assistant will be playing our first ever gig at Casablancas in Brighton on Wednesday 19th February 2003. Details can be got from the Assistant website. The night is known as The Bootlegger's Ball, and is a new (and seemingly successful) Band Showcase night; three bands playing and running from 9.30 'til 2 in the morning. We don't yet know what time we are on but we've been promised a 30/40 minute set, which is really good, as it cuts down the problem of culling our set (of which more later) and means we have time to play a few songs. I don't know who else is playing yet either, but the increasingly in-the-public-eye Clearlake headlined last week, so I don't think we are dealing with quite the same level of amateurism as we did in our ultmately fruitless contact with The Toad last year. Pete went to watch the first night and noted all the (reassuring or panic-inducing?) signs - the sound is good, the evening was well attended. And we may be nervous but we are also ready, so I'm looking forward to it unashamedly, without reserve. About fucking time, too.

2. And bad news always follows good. Well, news which has sorrowful ramifications for the band anyway. Anne-Sophie, our dazzlingly continental keyboardist, has just got a job in Luxembourg. Of couse,this is jolly good news for her, but it means that she is leaving us, at least she is assuming that she does not come back to Brighton. In the hope that she will, we're calling it a sabattical. Who knows though - she'll be greatly missed, and not just coz she makes cool noises. This makes attendence at next week's gig doubly essential, I need scarcely hasten to add - if you want to see the five-piece in all it's angular glory, that is.

3. Not so much news, I suppose, but an update on rehearsals is probably due. Mostly we've been working on refining the set, although we've found time to do some more work on Freaks (now sounding really great) and Sleepwalk (complete with gorgeous intro and a bit less clutter). Trimming our songs down to a setlist has proved really difficult, of course, particularly when people have preferences. Pete and I were musing on how hard it must be to pull together an album. Nevertheless, we decided on a setlist consisting of...

1. It's Alright
2. Losing my Mind
3. Bomba
4. Broken
5. John Wyndham
6. Get Away
7. Tonight
8. No-one need ever know
9. Reasoned
10. Freaks
11. I want a cigarette.

Having said that, with one rehearsal to go... who knows. This time next week we may be playing a 40 minute bass odyssey.

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