Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Getting better all the time

My first impression of Jon Epworth and The Improvements, after listening to the bouncy anti-war ditty Please Stop Celebrating, was that they would have fit great on a bill with Ted Leo and The Pharmacists. The other stuff on their excellent CD Wet On Wet - purchased directly after their set - isn't quite so early-Elvis Costello-ish. It's just as issue-oriented, though not in a way that makes you feel you're being bludgeoned by one man's opinion. Musically though, there's a bit more going on, with post-'77 alternative and indie rock making a stronger showing. Live the group is ace. They're obviously having fun and are easily amused by the consequences of occasional exuberance, as when Jon leaped off the drum riser "and totally missed the strings" or made a funny face after a particularly superfluous rock yell.

Jon sings!

Jon sings quite a bit!

Shane Kerr basses!

Jason Vautour plays guitar - a role he also filled for Rebekah Higgs in the next set. Sean MacGillivray of The Burdocks shows up for harmony vocals.

Mike Belyea on drums.

Shane and Jason also filled in a few harmonies.

Improving action!

Big finish!

That was definitely one of the better sets I've seen this year. Pity it was a bit short. Definitely a must-see when they roll through your town.

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