SHEFFIELD CORPORATION: 2-3-2013
It's been over 20 years since I last clapped eyes on these fine upstanding young gentlemen! So you could have forgiven me for being giddier than mister giddy from giddy town on an exceedingly giddy day!!!
Y'see, the Dogs D'Amour & me have a little bit of history. Right from the very first time I clapped eyes on 'em in 1983, yours truly was gripped beyond belief. I must have travelled to most of the toilets this sceptred isle has to offer, in order to get my doggy fix! This fair eve did indeed have the makings of quite an emotional little soiree.
Also with quite a similar agenda to mine was my gig buddy for the evening, the lovely Mandy. For she too is a seasoned campaigner when it comes to our shared love of the Dogs D'Amour, having seen 'em probably more times than myself!
Though in slightly different time zones, we both kinda grew up with the Dogs. They were my first real love & it was an all encompassing passion!
Prior to their record deal, it seemed like no one in the world wanted to know 'em, I recall scouring the music rags every Wednesday for the slightest snippet of information or gig news. If they were playing & I was flush, I was on the National express coach to London, where I was carried off to a Jack Sparrowesque world for the best part of an hour. The chaos of some of those early shows was legendary. Tyla was a man who could out Iggy the Iggster, marry this with the swagger of their beautiful rock'n'roll sound; a perfect foil for Tylas romantic poetry & you had a very heady brew indeed. Many nights spent huddled on freezing steps in Victoria coach station & not a moments regret!
After all these years I still couldn't put my finger on what set these boys apart from the rest, until my old mate Mandy hit the nail firmly on the head! These cats were not your average cock rockers! (None of that, 'oi darlin, come 'ere & squeeze my power bulge' cobblers!) The Dogs gave us romantic ballads, love songs & tales of the disenfranchised, beautiful loser! So that's how they used to attract so many beautiful girls to their shows!
Even when the chaps took to the boards & hit us front & centre with 'Last bandit', it was pretty hard to take in that this was actually happening. Oh don't get me wrong, Manders & me had grins from lug 'ole to lug 'ole, not dissimilar to an explosion in a piano factory.
It wasn't until halfway (ish) through the set when they played 'how come it never rains' that the enormity of the situation hit me. I don't mind telling you, I was a bit on the emotional side. Safe to say I had a lump in my throat bigger than a witches beak!
The Dogs D'Amour suffice it to say, were not too shabby; not too shabby at all!!!!
Tylas voice is a lot more gruff these days, bordering on the Tom Waits. Bam still has the same drumming style all arms & sticks a flailing. Great to see Jo Dog still using that legendary customised Tele & Steve dependable as ever still having the on stage interplay with Tyla.
As is to be expected from a band of their age, the wild on stage shennanigans are not what they used to be. I remember many years ago in a tiny Nottingham club, Tyla went belly surfing (several times) on a stage ankle deep in beer, shredding his belly in the process! However they more than made up for it with an exemplary degree of professionalism, tonight the sound was perfect & the Dogs were tighter than a gnats chuff!
All those old songs sounded slick & fresh, having more than stood the test of time, blending in nicely with the new material.
What's more, they still look bloody great!
The scarves have got a little shorter & the waistcoats just a little smarter but they are unmistakably & undeniably, still, the Dogs D'Amour.
I don't know how long they were on stage, I can't remember the majority of songs they played but I do know that it only seemed to last a mere 5 minutes. I do hope they keep it together to play more shows & record more material, because I for one want more, tonight was just not enough!
With that we were off up the M1 to leeds & the not so bright lights of Pontefract respectively.
Now did that really happen? Boys; you'd better come back & do it all again just to make sure!!