27th July 2019 - The Star and Garter, Manchester

The gig was attended tonight as I was lured by the prospect of having a natter with some folk I hadn't seen for a while, supporting STP Stu which is par for the consistent course, seeing a new band and watching the mighty fine Pete Bentham and the Dinner Ladies.  The band exude quality, put on a show that, most importantly, is backed up by solid tuneage of a most transferable kind and is always delivered with 100% perspiration.  It was good to have a chat beforehand with the ever amiable stickman Tony and the always charming Anna who adds a bit of wind to the sonic servings.  As the previous band finished the racket making I opened a tin of Red Striped fuel and entered the gigging arena, this is what transpired.

A 'Brick' was hurled with good invigorating gusto with the band chomping at the bit in the attempt to make a gratifying impression.  I absorbed, relished the vibe and when one of my all-time favourites was rattled home next I was once more snagged - hook, line and drinker.  'Marcel Duchamp' is a catchy peach, it hails the punk artiste who never played ball, his face was held aloft by the egg-breasted lasses who jigged like jellies in a jalopy and back-vocalled like sirens on a mission.  It was a swift turning point, many of the uninitiated who I had confidently promised to be in for a treat came over and nodded with agreement - this was a good band in a groove.  Onwards, the next pinnacle was the politically smart 'Controlled By Buildings' again built on a hook but this time sending home a message we should all consider a little more carefully.  'Dead's Not Punk' is sheer simplistic genius, it moves things to the next level, got more and more involved, and as the dancers grew and the eyes stayed agog the ears were continually blessed with acoustic excitement of the most applaudable kind.   'Work' worked wonders, 'A Bas Le Caviar' and 'Vive Le Kebab' were swallowed in two almighty gulps, 'Goth Postman' is perhaps the latest hit from the pit and 'Hot Potater' is a joyous jump and jive fest liable to get one's undercarriage all a tremble.  The set flashed by, the crowd were invaded, indulged and included, as 'Queen Victoria' dangled her 'Knob' and at the last a request went up in the form of 'Don't Take Away The Truth'.  Man - where had this set gone, wasn't this just what my 53 year old carcass needed, I smiled away in a room full of similarly positioned countenances - hot damn baby.  I went downstairs to sing the bands praises, it was a pleasure to do so.

So the Dinner Ladies came, they splattered their cacophonic custard over the realms of my eavesdropping being, they serenaded my spotted dick with sweet sonic brilliance and they flipped my attentive apple turnover many times leaving me reeling with a feel-good aftershock.  Pete Bentham led the way - a maestro very much in the zone.   The band are the complete package, I love them and despite riding a decent wave I reckon the crest is due to get higher and higher very, very soon.  Hold on to your plates folks and make sure you get second helpings – sometimes gluttony is a good thing!