The Crookes - Jericho Tavern, Oxford - Gigs - Reviews - Soundblab

The Crookes - Jericho Tavern, Oxford

by alan duttfield Rating:8 Release Date:2012-02-25

I’ve seen The Crookes at various venues, festivals, surrounded by cameras, just off the back of a high-profile interview, adrenalin pumped. Going on stage, coming off stage with their futures bright.

It’s Sunday, November, wet damp, and here we are, gathered at The Jericho Tavern in Oxford to watch The Crookes kick off their mini promotional tour of recently released album SoapboxConservatively I’d say a crowd of 50, maybe after a couple of dandelion and burdocks, 60.

From a punters point of view, there can’t be any disappointment with the numbers, unless your mates haven’t turned up. Instead of being 10, 30, 100 yards away from the band, in some cases watching a bloody screen just to say “I was there”, we are up close and personal. We know the brand of their deodorant and they know ours. That said, I’m not sure everyone in the crowd has made the effort to spray or roll.

From the band's point of view, what are they thinking? “No pressure, let’s enjoy it?” or “We’ve just travelled 200 miles and we have fewer here than gather at a Christmas party for my Granny?" Well, this is what The Crookes supplied. They gave 16 smackers from 'Marcy' to 'Maybe' to 'Magicians' to 'Colliers Wife'.

If these guys were a jazz band they would be called tight. They have their timing off to a tee. Guitar riffs, drum solos, wee bit of vocal improvisation at times - get this wrong and you look like a karaoke band. They don’t, they get it right with each number played.

At no stage was there a sense of going through the motions. Punters, fans could observe what is required to produce those songs, the ones we play air-guitar-style. Or lip-synch those lingering vocals. 

Would you have manage to squeeze a security guard between Crookes and fans? As the gig went on a cigarette paper would have struggled to separate the two. If the crowd would have been in the hundreds or thousands, the outcome would have been the same - great performance, happy fans. These guys work hard, have a great work ethic and sound like a band going places each time I’ve been to their gigs.

The one caveat is this: They need an anthem, a song which will launch an album, which will move them into a different league. Lyrics, timing ability, festival fan base, they have it all.

Hundreds, thousands of fans love them in isolation, it’s the collective they need.

The Crookes need a big tune.

Comments (1)

This comment was minimized by the moderator on the site

What is "dandelion and burdocks" ? An ale ?

There are no comments posted here yet