Having cycled across from YYT as fast as I could in the hope of catching The Gar's set, I actually got there before either of the bands had started. Out on the street there were a few people drinking beers from the Family Mart next door - was this what everyone meant when they said the spirit of LOgO would never die? Having climbed the stairs to LUNE, it became clear why people were milling around outside - they were playing lounge dance music inside.
Anyway, Mr Graceless took to the stage and played a pretty solid set. They had a couple of slower, shoegazery numbers which didn't come off so well given that they started at 11pm and people were looking for something a bit more punchy, but overall they delivered a good set of melodic rock songs, with bursts of energy at times. I'm listening to their demo CD now and it's good. They may look like they're all 15 (that's probably just me getting old), but these guys are well worth keeping an eye on.
The Gar followed immediately afterwards and, although there was the odd new song, they generally stuck to the classics and, as I mentioned, when they played 'Circle', the place went nuts. They were as tight and spot on as ever, with Box slotting in nicely on the bass - it was as if they'd never been away, despite this being their first gig here in 18 months.
Alas, they should have been in a proper gig venue. LUNE is a lounge bar, with sofas and a stage that is only slightly raised off the dancefloor. It might work for a lounge band or something, but when you have a quality rock band and people who want to jump around, it doesn't work. At least the sound equipment was better, but at LOgO you at least had that down and dirty rock atmosphere so gigs worked there. The crowd was a bit disappointing in terms of numbers, but when things did kick off, I got sent flying at one point and took out a girl who was standing on a chair next to me because she had no other way of seeing the band. Luckily she landed on a sofa and was ok, but if either of us had been a metre further forward, one of us would have hit a pillar instead. This is not a venue built for rock bands I'm afraid.
Still, The Gar are back and, on this evidence, on fine form, so let's hope for an album in the new year.