Well, I failed to win any Web-cartoonists' Choice Awards this time around. It's probably for the best. I usually respond to winning a prize by suffering a seismic crisis of confidence and, as a result, plunging over the creative cliff "on fire".
In all honesty, I think I've done very well to be nominated so many years in a row for "Outstanding Comic". I'm never going to beat Nicholas Gurewitch of Perry Bible Fellowship at that, he is a genius at what he does. Though if quality was not an issue and quantity was placed front and centre, I would be officially five times better than him. Yes, take THAT and put it on the shelf with all your prizes, sir! When you're shining up your trophies and crowns, remember that for every one time you put a piece of paper in the scanner, I put FIVE in there. And I have to scan each of them twice because my scanner refuses to scan the bottom centimetre of my A4 paper. So that's TEN scans for every one of yours. Who's laughing now?
Here are all the sounds I witnessed in the last week with short, pithy reviews, so I can look back in future times and see exactly how and when I went deaf.
Tuesday Feb 13th: THE HOLD STEADY + The Checks + Former Bullies
How exciting to see the Hold Steady, the main band in America for hollering about all sorts of things over a right bar-room racket, on UK soil. They were brilliant. The Checks were choogling boogie of the kind that might have impressed a Faces fan in 1973, and Former Bullies have been haunting the Manchester scene for years and will never triumph unless they learn to face front and address the audience clearly, confidently and directly.
Saturday Feb 16th: KLAXONS + CSS + Sunshine Underground + New Young Pony Club
This was the NME New Rave tour, and as someone old enough to remember old rave, I have to say that if you are going to start a new movement, don't make it exactly the same as the dance punk movement of TWO YEARS AGO (except with glowsticks). In any case, CSS are brilliant (full marks for coming on stage in makeshift burkas), Klaxons are rubbish, Sunshine and My Little Pony Club are promising. I counteracted any ennui created by the deadbeat headliners with improvisational rave dancing and some handsome badges I made (including "NEW DAVE") which prospective new ravists can buy from me in London next month.
Sunday Feb 17th: LONG BLONDES + Lodger + Navvy
75% of people at this gig were 5ft tall girls in footless leggings and shirt dresses. I thought I was going to get the vapours. The diminutive and petite stature of many of the audience made for comfortable viewing of another fine rock outing. Navvy tried hard and had a lead (LEED not LED) cowbell, Lodger had sweater vests and some decent tunes, and the Long Blondes are a proper pop band with a proper pop star front-lady for people who like Blondie and Pulp equally well. Well done, Long Blondes, well done, you win this week's gig crown.