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The Loves 24/3/01 Betsey Trotwood

The tiny room upstairs at the Betsey is even tinier tonight with a 'stage' (ie the band's gear) wedged in one corner taking up a chunk of the floor space, not to mention the gaggle of cheery admirers The Loves have brought from Cardiff with them for their first London gig.
Lured by the Track & Field Organisation's (who are putting this gig on) referencing of The Loves as 'The Stooges and The Shangri Las' we're expecting all sorts of merry hell, possibly even early Mary Chain hell. What we get is The Pooh Sticks.

Bowl cuts a go-go, there are seven Love children, including a small girl hidden behind a large speaker shaking a tambourine with her back to the audience. I don't even notice her until two songs from the end. Vocals are shared between number one bowlboy on guitar and a giggling girl in home-customised tee-shirt, who gets to perform a twee-girl solo song. Bowlboy 2, also on guitar, kneels down and scrapes at the strings of a cello with a bow for another song, to no discernible effect. The studied sixtiescool moves are all there, including swingy-haired chick on keyboards.

the loves flyer
Sadly, the bubblegum fuzz jangle is a looong way from both The Stooges (no snarl, no trash, no evol) and the Shangri Las (no shimmer, no shimmy). The Loves sounds may have been twangled a thousand times or more over the last thirty-odd years, but its still endearing to see these bobheads shaking their shambolic shalala action. Like chocolate cake for afters, the best is saved 'til last, 'Je T'Aime Baby', a driving, rampaging groove which gets people jumping. As it rumbles to an end they've run out of songs, but the audience is blocking the bands' only exit, so they're forced to play a tumbling party piece version of 'Baby Love' complete with dodgy harmonies and giggling. Hey you never saw Iggy do that.
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