Tag Archives: Boston Music Rooms

Cairo announce London gig with special guests Kyrbgrinder

Cairo Promo Photo 2017

Cairo will be playing Boston Music Rooms on 31st March with the prog-metal power trio Kyrbgrinder as support, billed as “Scarab Spring”. The band also confirm that Lisa Driscoll, who stepped in at very short notice for the November launch shows is now a permanent member of the band.

We are pleased to be playing this London show in advance of the Nineteen-73 Promotions Stephen Lambe Birthday Special at Bilston on 2nd April.

We are even more pleased that the mighty Kyrbgrinder, who are enjoying something of a renaissance, will be launching proceedings with their powerful sound and massive drumming from one of the best in the business – the inimitable Johanne James, also, of course, of Threshold fame. With Lisa Driscoll now a permanent fixture in Cairo – this will very much be a ‘Beauty and the Beast’ show, although whether that reflects band playing order will be for others to decide…!”.

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Cairo and Luna Rossa

Cairo

To promote the launch of the album “Say”, former Touchstone mainman Rob Cottingham’s new band Cairo embarked on a short three-date tour taking in London, Rotherham and Leicester over the course of a long weekend.

The support for all three shows was Luna Rossa, playing as a duo rather than the expanded four-piece that performed a few headline shows last year. Playing a set drawing heavily from their second album “Secrets and Lies”, their stripped-down less-is-more sound was as beautiful as ever. “Fly Away” was still a highlight even with Jon playing the harp parts on piano, as was the cover of Todd Rundgren’s “Tiny Demons” with Jon teasing the audience with a couple of bars of “No Quarter” on the intro. They ended with a cover of Leonard Cohen’s “Anthem”, commemorating the legend who’s passed away just days before.

Luna Rossa

Cairo’s set began with an announcement from Rob Cottingham that there was bad and good news. The bad news was that vocalist Rachel Hill, who’d sung on the album, had stepped down from the band for health reasons. The good news was that a new singer, Lisa, had joined and had learned the set at very short notice.

You’d never have known. The whole band delivered a tight performance both on Friday in London and on Sunday in Leicester, a mix of melodic rock and metal with the odd touch of electronica. Lisa impressed as a vocalist given how recently she’s joined the band, sharing twin female/male lead vocals with Rob himself. Paul Stocker’s propulsive bass riffs drove many of the heavier songs, with the fluid guitar work of the youthful James Hards adding colour and textures.

The five-piece band played the album “Say” in full, though not in the album running order, rounding out the set with “Chasing Storms” from Rob Cottingham’s earlier solo album “Captain Blue”, and another song from his much older solo album from pre-Touchstone days. The older material fitted seamlessly into the set, which confirms the feeling that “Say” is closer to a heavier version of Captain Blue than to Touchstone’s sound. They saved the best till last, rocking out with the dramatic and dynamic “Nothing to Prove” and ending with their nearest thing to a single, the title track of “Say”.

Cairo

Cairo started their live career with a bang. For a brand new band theu have gelled extremely well, especially give the last-minute change in lineup. They were good even at their very first gig together in London, and even more powerful two nights later in Leicester, pulling appreciable crowds on both occasions. They have more plans for 2017, so watch this space.

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Knifeworld, Boston Music Rooms

Knifeworld

Though they headlined the Prog Magazine sponsored “Stabbing A Dead Horse” tour in 2012 and have appeared on the bill of several progressive rock festivals including Summers End and most recently HRH Prog, Knifeworld are not exactly an old-school prog band. They have feet in other camps. Certainly the healthy-sized crowd in the small north London venue was rather younger and more fashionable than a typical middle-aged prog audience, though were still quite a few of the London prog regulars present.

The first of two supports were Barrington, a power trio based around angular riffs with strong echoes of 80s King Crimson, and some very muscular drumming. So much so that stage by the kit was covered in feathers; unless there had been a fight between a pigeon and a cat which had ended badly for the pigeon, he’d burst the pillow inside the bass drum. The band did have one or two interesting ideas but ultimately came over very one-dimensional, and had little in the way of stage presence.

The second support, Cesaraians were an awful lot more entertaining, a bonkers six-piece with a keyboard-heavy sound, trumpet and violin replacing guitar, and a compelling frontman who understood stagecraft in a way most bands don’t. Their music defies easy genre classification; there were elements of 80s new-wave plus an occasional blues flourish, and an awful lot of rock’n'roll attitude. Not many support bands are this good, and it was good to see Kavus Torabi himself in the front row for a good part of the set.

Knifeworld at Boston Music Roomx

Knifeworld were a sax player short (I was told this was purely a temporary absence), but the temporary reduction to a seven piece did little to diminish their sound. Armed with his distinctive gold and white Gresch guitar, Kavus Torabi led his band through a spellbinding set of psychedelic grooves, Zappa-style horn arrangements, intertwining guitar and bassoon lines, and layered vocal harmonies. One of Kavus’ solos emphasised the Zappa vibe, very evocative of the great man himself.

The setlist drew heavily from their latest and best album, 2014′s “The Unravelling” along with highlights from their earlier discs and some new as yet unrecorded material. Even when a man short the intricacies of the records come over strongly live. The whole set flowed as a seamless whole, making it hard to single out highlights, though the encore of “Me To The Future of You” was particularly mesmerising with Melanie Wood and Chloe Herrington’s harmonies at the end.

It was all very heady stuff; regardless of how you try to classify them genre-wise there is nobody else quite like Knifeworld. They proved yet again that they really are quite a remarkable live band.

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