earthtone9 / Forever Until October Linoln Falcon September 22 2001

Uh, I think this was possibly the most surreal gig I've ever seen. I believe it was advertised as the On The Roof fest or some such name. Which I thought was just a name for a festival. A strange name I'll admit, but a name nonetheless.

Nope. It was a festival, with the bands playing on a roof, with access via scaffolding and a tarpaulin cover. Meanwhile the crowd are about 10 - 12 feet below stood outside the back of the pub. And it were chilly. Bizarre. But cool, there seemed to be a reasonable number of people there, and it's the sort of thing we need more of. Though preferrably in summer. And luckily it didn't rain.

It's the second time I've seen Forever Until October, the first being when they supported Rival Schools. Not listened to the EP that much, but that is something that ought to be remedied. The music, well, for me it's emo. Not that I know too much about this style to be able to make sensible comparisons. It's melodic and tight, some nice twists and turns, and it's all underpinned by some fine fine vocals. A lot of emo bands seem to suffer, if that's the right word, from a weak vocalist, the voice croaks and breaks - and that's "part of the charm, the pure emotion", or else they're a little nauseating. But with Forever, the vocals are the crowning glory. Assured, confident, able to take things to a new level. The EP only runs for something like 9 minutes. It's not enough to get your teeth into. Live is more satisfying. When they release an album rather than the current tease, then there could well be something to get your teeth into.

So another day another dollar another gig another drummer. This is the second one with current drum stool occupier Alex, and only about the 6th time they've played together I think, including rehearsals. So it's an obvious focal point, so let's get that over to start with. Bearing in mind that I am no musician anyway, there are a few times where I think "hmm, that sounded weird / different / wrong" they did well. Cos those moments are probably just me anyway rather than any obvious mistakes. And I was listening out for it, well as much as I can.

The set opens with Evil Crawling I, and Dave is the first to take up the challenge of rock, or looking over the edge down at those craning their necks to see the band. No stage divers tonight however. "You're speaking Northern at me, I don't understand" reckons Karl in response to, well, some people speaking to him. "Now you're shouting Northern at me" in response to the truly British technique of making yourself understood more clearly by shouting.

It's chilly out here, the breath catching in the air as the band roll through p.r.d chaos, star damage, withered and the new tracks from the net, Amnesia and Revelation. Maybe it's being outside, maybe it's the alcohol, maybe it's watching a relaxed band on, er, a roof but I find myself singing the words / noises more vigorously tonight. I sincerely apologise if anyone actually heard, and hope that people are not scarred / scared for life. I even almost forget that they've not yet played tat twam. Until that is the intro starts up. The tribaly sections on this and p.r.d are the only times really where it sounds to me like there's much of a difference in the drums. But hey, I'd probably be playing totally different rhythms to everyone else, so I wouldn't take that as much to go by. Binary ends with the customary jam, and the non customary band departure across slightly rickety scaffolding. Bizarre.