Ok, so let’s start with an old gig, from about a year ago. (Hopefully I’ll get more recent gigs up, this is just a test drive, as it were)
Tim Minchin announced he was doing the Camden gig only two weeks before it happened, which isn’t that long. It was announced at the beginning of December, and the gig was set for the 19th. Nearing Christmas, I was scraping the barrel for money, however, it’s so rare that Tim does gigs in the UK now, especially solo shows, that I thought it would be worth it.
And was it? Of course. However, I’m a huge fan, so there is a little bias here.
For those that have never been to Koko I urge you to go. I know it’s NME’s venue of choice, and it is therefore often filled with wannabe hipsters who are all into a blend of electro-synth-indie-hop that is too cool to dance to. Looking beyond this, if there’s a band you like playing there I recommend you go. It used to be a theater, and is still decked out like one. There is a fantastic feeling of highbrow theater still clinging to the red velvet upholstery, along with the smell of beer and teenage sweat.
The support act were a duo called Bitter Ruin. Two singers Georgia Train and Ben Richards. They came on stage, leaning heavily on blue and purple lighting (which I hate, as my bridge cannot handle blue light, at all) which always gives the impression of a small band at a small venue. The performance itself was very good. Train has a fantastic voice, and Richards can effortlessly harmonise with it.
The main act itself, Mr.Minchin, was brilliant. It could have been a disappointment to anyone expecting a night of stand up comedy with a few funny songs thrown in. The night’s proceeds went to Medicins Sans Frontieres, which is a fantastic cause. Tim did a mix of songs, dipping into a couple of hits that his comedy fans would at least know, which included Cheese and Woody Allen Jesus. The rest of his set was less based on comedy, and he put a strong focus on his gentler and more emotional songs, such as Drowned, Beauty and a brand new song ‘seeing you for the first time’.
There was an element of self indulgence, and though he did interact with the audience he also broke off to talk to his wife who was apparently watching from one of the VIP boxes left over from the theater days. To be fair to them both, Tim mentioned that this was his last gig in the UK for a while, as the family were moving back to Aus, so we can’t be too harsh on them.
The gig was wonderful, all the covers were brilliantly done, ‘Waterloo Sunset’ was fantastic, and Tim roped Georgia from Bitter Ruin to do Hallelujah with him for his second encore, which was good, although not my favorite version of the song by a long way. His cover ‘feel like going home‘ and his version of ‘when I grow up‘ (from the Matilda musical he scored) were -and still are – favorites of mine.
I will be quiet now. Too much talking. Here are some (hopefully pretty) pictures.