Thursday, 6 January 2011

180 THE PARACHUTE MEN, Dave Graney, The Harbourkings, London Marquee, Tuesday 27 November 1990

A free guest list invite to this gig plopped onto my doormat, so it was the least I could do to go along to see my favourite band! Made my way up to London on train and over to the new Marquee, then hung out with the Parachute Men backstage awhile. Overstayed my welcome a little, methinks! Both supports were unimpressive; The Harbourkings were too lightweight, and Dave Graney - who pissed the Paras off immensely, particularly Fiona, by nicking their rider - a noisy r'n'b mess.

The Parachute Men however set the disappointingly half full Marquee alight with a brilliant set, the best I've ever heard them sound, with Steve's guitar sending shards of sound strafing around the venue like a latter-day Bob Mould, and Colleen and Paul (the well oiled machine!) providing a tight, solid base for Fiona's as ever deliciously husky vocals, and frontperson energy and drive. Whoever thinks the Parachute Men are a wistful and unassuming little pop band should really have been here at the Marquee to be blown away by their titanic but intelligent and thoughtful latter day punk rock!

I wasn't to know it at the time, but this was the last time I saw the Parachute Men "live", as they split up shortly afterwards. An incalculable shame, as they were really a band I fell deeply in love with, and, writing this paragraph over 20 years later, I still hold them dear.

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