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21 October 2004: The 22-20s + Willy Mason - Rescue Rooms, Nottingham, England, UK

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This was to be my first gig at the rescue rooms, a fairly new venue in Nottingham, so the first priority was to find the place. This didnít prove too taxing however and we were in plenty of time to get a beer and get ready for the support. The venue is quite a small place but the stage is well positioned and a 6 footer like me had no problem seeing what was going on, however as I had the pleasure of accompanying three ladies all who are under 5 ft 2 they could see bugger all, but I guess if your that size you get used to it.

The first to take the stage was Willy Mason, a 19 year old lad from Massachusetts, his style of acoustic guitar had an obvious country/blues influence and his vocal style reminded me of Leonard Cohen, although his songs were not as dark. There was a good mix tracks with some interesting lyrics (the one about the NYPD was particularly good), and after about half an hour he left the stage leaving me wanting to hear more CDís are available from the gigs and via the web.

Next up was Cathy Davey. a Dublin lass who is creating a bit of a stir. The set was taken from the new album Something Ilk. The vocal style was very reminiscent to Edie Brickell and the music was surprisingly powerful (I say surprisingly because the album is more laid back) I think I prefer the live feel, just a bit more energy.

The 22-20ís hail from Lincoln and have been receiving a lot of attention from BBC 6 music, the new album 22-20ís went straight to number one on the 6 music chart and having only heard a couple of tracks I thought them worth going to see. The set as expected was pretty much the whole of the album, tracks included Such a fool, Iím the one, Hold on, Shoot your gun (Lisa's particular favourite), Devil in me, I assume that they played the forthcoming single 22 Days but I can/t remember hearing it (for some reason the sound which I have to say had been superb all night definitely took a bit of a dip during the set.). If you havenít heard them and you like bluesy guitar rock then Iíd recommend them.

I think the best part of the evening was the quality and musicianship of all the performers, and the variety of styles on show, I thoroughly enjoyed myself and will be adding three more CDís to my collection.

Cheers.

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© Simon, livemusicreview.co.uk

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