Review: 3 Daft Monkeys, Gloucester Guildhall

Inflatable Buddha - image courtesy of Martin Svancar

I’d not heard much of 3 Daft Monkeys before we reviewed their latest self-released album The Antiquated & The Arcane a short while ago, but since then I’ve had the album on near-constant repeat and have fallen in love with their eclectic folk stylings. It was with some excitement, then, that I recently attended their gig at Gloucester’s Guildhall.

Arriving late due to a slight guestlist kerfuffle and having a bit of a chin-wag with an old friend in the bar, I missed the start of opening act Inflatable Buddha. It turns out that this was a major mistake on my part. Wandering in to find enigmatic poet/mandolin player Steve Larkin joking around with the crowd as naturally as if he were best of mates with everyone in the room, I was instantly hooked. Their particular brand of quirky folk punk was quite mesmerising to behold, a relentless energy surging from Larkin, and also double-bass player and co-vocalist Susannah Starling, through the remainder of their set. Particular highlights for me were ‘Clown’, a highly entertaining tail about a bi-polar, alcoholic circus worker which very clearly showcases the poetic nous that won Larkin 2004’s Spoken Word Olympics in Canada, and ‘Life Is Sweet’, which got the crowd well and truly warmed up through the liberal use of well-timed hoi‘s. A thoroughly enjoyable set, and I shall certainly be looking out for this 4-piece in the future.


News: What’s On – Gloucestershire Music Festivals

Those of us around the Gloucestershire area have a feast of music to choose from this weekend with two music festivals happening simultaneously.

In Cheltenham, the Frog and Fiddle pub is hosting Frog-Fest. Last year this was a one day event but this year for the first time they’ve decided to make a weekend of it. Starting with an opening gig tonight, the weekend will see two full days of gigs both in the Frog and Fiddle’s barn stage and on a new acoustic stage outside (hopefully the weather will stay away, then). Over the weekend Frog-Fest presents a host of local talent and some bands from a bit further afield, including Jim Lockey and The Solemn Sun, Midnight Mile, Rookie/Error, Orchid Fever, Brown Torpedo and Emmett Brown.

Meanwhile, over in Gloucester at the Guildhall there is the Underground Festival. This is a new music festival featuring emerging and unsigned bands from all over the country. Boasting three stages on both Saturday and Sunday the line up includes The Joy Formidable, Pulled Apart By Horses, Morning Parade, Tubelord, The Xcerts, Little Fish and Wild Palms.

This is looking like a good little festival with a great line up promoting smaller bands so I hope that it does well and returns next year.

Tickets are still available for both events on a daily basis or for weekend passes. Further details are available, with complete lineups and times, from the websites for each event (just click the links above).

If you’re attending any of them, let us know – a few Spotisfaction staffers will be in attendance at each, so come say hello.