Live review of Dananananaykroyd, Johnny Foreigner and My Psychoanalyst at The Venue in Derby on September 22nd 2008.
My Psychoanalyst are something of a rarity these days; a band who truly eschew the word eclectic rather than use it as an attractive by-word for the purpose of enhancing their CV. The fact they're on a bill such as this only adds to the confusion for some, but by the end of their four song set, they've completely won over the whole room. Their sound may be impossible to pigeonhole, but with elements of My Bloody Valentine squalls of sound and a similarity to Her Name Is Calla in that every song is punctuated by a succession of unexpected time changes not to mention instrument swapping ad infinitum, My Psychoanalyst are an enthralling proposition that one suspects will be topping rather than propping up bills such as this before long.
Glaswegian sextet Dananananaykroyd are an unholy beast that were surely made for settings such as this. Reared on the remnants of US hardcore and obscure math rock they may have been, but in the context of a live arena they really are something else entirely. Two drummers, one of whom, James Hamilton, spends just as much time sharing vocal duties with regular frontman Calum Gunn, two guitarists and a bass player whose claim to fame thus far happens to be the fact she's married to one of The Futureheads. Dananananaykroyd are anything but your average conventional band; in fact there is nothing average about them whatsoever, and even when they break out into one of their more structured 'songs', the At The Drive-In raping 'Some Dresses', there's a level of excitement all around that what you're witnessing is something very, very special in the making indeed. Imagine Idlewild tearing through 'Captain' with the Beastie Boys on vocals while Kiss play in the background and you're halfway there. Dananananaykroyd don't just steal the show this evening, they make it nigh on impossible for anyone to follow them here or anywhere else for that matter. Ladies and gentlemen, the bar has been raised.
Which is a fact not lost on headliners Johnny Foreigner. Looking slightly dishevelled and more the worse for wear, frontman Alexei Berrow seems to be struggling tonight from the word go, forgetting the setlist at one point before admitting between songs that fatigue and lack of a healthy diet has got the better of him. New song 'Dark Hours' sounds promising while the more familiar duo of 'Our Bipolar Friends' and 'Eyes Wide Terrified' bring a tad more semblance to the proceedings but even bassist Kelly Southern's proposition to all the males in the audience to look up her skirt can't detract from the fact that Johnny Foreigner, for all the hype around them, just fall short of expectations and leave us wanting more..of Dananananaykroyd, which we duly receive as the Scots gatecrash the final song, much to the delight of everyone left in the venue.
By the end, JoFo's Alexei Berrow has dashed to the gents to throw his proverbial guts up while the rest of us simply bask in the knowledge that Glasgow has thrown up yet another gem, even if the name doesn't roll off the tongue quite so easily.