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Notting Hill Arts Club
7th September 2011


pink cigar
Pic by Justin P Brown, with thanks

It's not often that you get the chance to witness two gigs in one evening and certainly not that often that you can actually be bothered to do so. However tonight was an exception. Having seen country and western legend Dolly Parton earlier in the evening at the O2 Arena (yes, you did read that right, I was there on the blag and although she's got her knockers, I actually thought she was great), I decided to stop off at the trendy Notting Hill Arts Club en route towards home because the rather splendid Pink Cigar were playing just before midnight.

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I first witnessed Ladbroke Grove rockers Pink Cigar earlier this year when they supported the Heavy Metal Kids at the Camden Underworld and was immediately hooked by their youthful enthusiam of high energized sleazy gutter rock which contains the phelgm of Iggy Pop And The Stooges, New York Dolls, Faster Pussycat or even the Dogs D'Amour.

The Arts club is packed to the rafters with uber trendy students all hell bent on having a good time. A DJ is providing some cool sounds and looking at the audience I was wondering if they would give a passing toss when Pink Cigar would come on stage, but boy, how wrong was I? The band grabbed the venue by the balls and the place was rocking.

pink cigar
Pic by Justin P Brown, with thanks

With only a tiny stage to perform on, the band were cock sure of giving a perfromance to remember. The Arts Club is split into two areas and it didn't take long for the live music room to fill up. Soon people were falling over the bands monitors, knocking over microphone stands and even some stray middle aged woman, who had obviously had a few too many gins, clamboured up on stage to grab hold of singer Sharkie Cottrell who with tongue in cheek informed everyone that she was in fact his Mother who enjoyed her time in the spotlight for a few numbers.

It was choas near the front and from the side from where I was watching, it was a bit like watching a young Guns 'N Roses at the Roxy. Sharkie has a voice similar to Taime Downe of Faster Pussycat (who ironically they support at the end of the month), drummer Sid Mayall is safely at the back from the animated characters of Johnny Thunders lookalike guitarist Edd Whyte who comes up with some cool original riffs and bassist Sam Rutland who at times almost headbutts the ceiling when he was pogoing away.

pink cigar
Pic by Justin P Brown, with thanks

There's a good mixture of sounds in the set. Full on rockers such as 'Dreaming Of Love' and 'Hot Dog By The River', but the band really shine when they go for a different groove on the strutting 'Strange' or the excellent flamenco razzle of 'Gypsy' or the real howling grower 'Throat'.

Pink Cigar wanted to play on, and the arty crowd was begging for more but the man on the sound desk was frantically calling cut with an imaginary knife across his throat before the place turned into a riot. Tonight's show was that good.

pink cigar
Pic by Justin P Brown, with thanks

Pink Cigar are one of the hottest new bands out there at the moment. Don't be too surprised if they blow Faster Pussycat off the stage at the Camden Underworld on October 29th. I've said this before and I'll say it again, all the women will be putting their numbers up on Pink Cigar's own bathroom wall that night.

Put a pink cigar in your mouth and smoke it baby because the Pink Cigar are fully loaded.

Set list:

Dreaming Of Love
This Girl
Hot Dog By The River
Generation Next



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