Black Swan/The Disintegrates/Like Junk
Saturday, November 30, 2013
Last Saturday saw The Bakery almost packed to its full with punters happy to see a legendary local band: The Scientists. The fact that the audience consisted of three generations of people who love and respect the band proves the theory that some things last forever, regardless how small or underlooked they were when they first happened.
Reunions are a funny phenomenon – sometimes bands do it for the money, sometimes for the love of music they overcome any obstacles. Not sure if they were any obstacles in The Scientists’ case, but on Saturday night it sounded like they reformed for the sake of having a jam together in front of lots of people, and that is probably the best reason for any band to play together again.
This was not their first time they reformed, though. In 1995 the original line up that recorded early records played a one-off show on the roof of the Grosvenor Hotel, together with another set of local heroes from back in the day, The Manikins. A few years ago, The Scientists Mk.II played the PIAF, covering mostly the later period of the band.
But tonight it was time for the original line up, with Kim Salmon, James Baker, Roddy Radalj and Boris Sujdovic there to entertain our ears with the songs from their early power-pop period. They opened with Girl and it was obvious straight away that the band was in fine form. Not over rehearsed, slightly loose, but holding it together really well – particularly James Baker, whose familiar yet superbly steady beat never failed to deliver the kicks, both literally and metaphorically speaking.
It was a somewhat odd choice to play a cover of Sympathy For The Devil as their second song into the set. Even though they did a decent job of it, it somehow broke the momentum, but it got picked up right when they went back into playing their own material, like I’m Looking For You. Frantic Romantic got played earlier than expected as well and, as expected, Last Night and Drop Out went well with the audience.
As mentioned earlier, the band was obviously having great time, with James Baker being really funny in his banter between the songs. The mix, at least in the back of the packed Bakery, was very bass and kick drum heavy, but it was not realistic to expect them to sound as they did back in the late 1970s – It sounded exactly as those songs were played through better equipment and on louder PA.
It is not known if The Scientists will have any other shows in this line up around the country – they should, for sure. With a band like this it is obvious there cannot be any big money involved and they are doing it for the fun of it and for our own fun. Such reunions are always more than welcome.
Photo by Daniel Grant