Friday, 16 July 2010

438 POLAK, Ben Hill, Bath Moles Club, Thursday 27 April 2000

A 3 week gig hiatus finally broken, thanks to a trip to Bath! Picked Rachel up at 8.30 and had a trundle down, parking the car in the usual underground car park and hitting the venue which was totally empty on arrival! The gig filled up steadily for a 10.30 start by Ben Hill, obviously a local band of youngsters, judging by their "rent-a-crowd"! Their music veered from the strummily catchy and almost haunting, to slightly boring anthemic Oasis-like yawnsville. However, with practice they may improve. Let's see...

The place then emptied for Polak! Come 11.15, when they took the stage, the crowd had halved! Nevertheless, Polak put on a bloody fine show of their broody, moody and magnificent songs. Vocalist Piotr Fijalkowski, formerly of early 90's wonders Adorable, was an excellent performer, banging his head on the low roof and jumping about in his usual enthusiastic manner. As for the band, they were tight and tough, backing up Pete's paeans of woe and misery with splendid tunes, reminiscent of early 80's rockist bands such as Echo And The Bunnymen, with the same sense of space and haunting melody.

A shame no-one except myself and Rachel seemed to care! We shook our legs and swayed along as appropriate, and cheered lustily enough for everyone. Nice to chat with the band afterwards, who nevertheless enjoyed the set and appreciated our enthusiasm. Asked Pete why they don't play Polak's joyous debut single "2 Minutes 45" any more, and his response was, "we're all miserable fuckers now!" That's as maybe, but Polak are still a damn fine band "live" with something to offer. I hope this is not their "Swansong"...

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