Tuesday, 18 January 2011
124 THE PARACHUTE MEN, Mousefolk, Southampton West Indian Club, Thursday 6 April 1989
An "Everything But The Parachute Men" gig, this; we found out on arrival that the Parachute Men were going to perform an acoustic set featuring just core members, vocalist Fiona and hubby/ guitarist/ songwriter Steve, plus a fat 12-string guitar and a backing vocalist (one of Fi's mates) out of necessity, as the drummer had been sacked and the bassist subsequently also quit! Hey ho, rock'n'roll...
The venue itself was a magnificently run-down old church, with the guts ripped out of it. Support Mousefolk were a good "rodent pop" noise-thrash band, before the main event.
The very stark and bare interpretations of the Paras numbers in this stripped back environment tonight were utterly superb, with Fi proving herself a wonderful husky and emotive vocalist, and Steve a totally talented guitarist. Shorn of the "rock" noise, the quality of the material and their performances really shone. A couple of covers, namely "Waterloo Sunset" and a sobbing, heart-rending reading of "Norwegian Wood", embellished another memorable set from, without doubt, my favourite band of the late 80's. Brilliant stuff!