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Urusei Yatsura: Camden Underworld 17th November 2000

My God! What is going on here? Friday night in Camden, indiescum-central, and there's barely a whey-faced, hair-slided soul in the house. Where are the fanzine kidz? Where are the boys & girls in manga-gear?? Where is everybody???
Fergus sits forlornly behind the tee-shirt/record stall. At least he's grown back the Kurt/Thurston locks and is looking bleach-barnetedly gangletastic.

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We go to watch Beachbuggy who have two drummers drumming (and a partridge in a pear tree) to the exact same beat. The spectacle of their arms flailing in unison is strangely mesmerising. The noise is excruciating. Beachbuggy obviously sound-checked optimistically hoping for a capacity crowd. As it is there aren't enough bodies to mop up this thunderous cacophony. We masochistically stick it out, pinned to the back wall of the 'dance' floor until our ears start to crumble. Cool noise and all, but there are limits.
Back in the bar, Elaine has taken over 'merchandising' (ho ho) duties and also seems to have taken the peroxide path, only to more ginger effect. Think I preferred the black.

Down on the dance floor, there is oceans of room as Urusei come on with Siamese (? possibly). It's mainly stuff from the new album (which, sadly, we have not yet come to cherish in the same way as the pop frenzy of Slain By Urusei Yatsura ) mixed with heart-warming old faves like Plastic Ashtray and Hello Tiger. Everybody seems glued to the floor, unwilling to bounce about. It's very strange to be this subdued during the splendor of Slain by Elf. Fergus does his best to provide the visuals by pogoing away behind his fringe. At one point there's a miniature stage invasion when two alarmingly goth/metal-type boys clamber up and jump about joylessly beside Graham.

The grand finale is an epic version of the best track from 'Everybody Loves Urusei Yatsura' (oh irony!). Sadly, 'Our Shining Path' doesn't get its fab 'Yoo Roo Syy Yat Soo Raa' robotvoice intro, but it does features a backwards stage invasion (a floor invasion?) as Fergus joins the 'crowd' to scrabble at his guitar (and nearly have my eye out in the process). It's like the parting of the Red Sea as the kids form a reverent circle around him, marveling as he drops to his knees in true scrabbley axe-hero style. I want this song to go on for hours, but it ends all too soon bringing the gig to a screeching end. Five minutes later, Graham's at the bar and Elaine's back at the tee-shirt stall. At least this time there are people buying things.
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