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GET HOT.GET DRUNK.NOD
:: Napoleon IIIrd :: Jeremy Warmsley :: getcape.wearcape.fly :: Lucy & The Caterpillar ::
22 September 2006 / Night & Day / Manchester
By Lauren Strain

Okay, okay, okay. Sam Duckworth, the boy who comprises all parts getcape.wearcape.fly, is an earnest young trouper meets troubadour with smoky fire in his voice of burning, adolescent uprising and a whole lot of vitriol for the British National Party. There is nothing wrong with any of these things. Okay, so he whacks his guitar and bounds back and forward and gallops around the stage like a wily little colt, snorting a bit and flicking his tongue out on the resentful consonants and rippling with healthy, suntanned fervour. Okay, so he’s young, he’s small, he chokes on some notes. But I’m just not seeing why this albeit-charming singer-songwriter fellow has QUITE SO MANY ardent followers.

Knock-your-throat-back-and-holler-along-with-every-note-even in-between-the-words-themselves type followers. Cultish followers. To me, he’s good. Not great, not remotely revolutionary; just good. Agreeable, highly-listenable (in the you-don’t-have-to-pay-too-much-attention-if-you-don’t-want-to – which you generally don’t, because it’s not all that captivating in the first place – sense) and moderately tuneful, yeah; but there’s just nothing that lodges in your head like a sticky burr and won’t shake. Confident, but a little unrefined; over-eager without the strength of musical vision. Having said that, ‘The Lighthousekeeper’ is a pretty, plucked paean to finding your way home, the defined strums pinpointing amber streetlights and, beyond the guitars, there are gaps of sky and gasps of sea, all in the cool, thoughtful, night-time spell.

Who knows. Maybe I’m just too busy channelling my depleted reserves of bodily willpower into surviving the intense damp and heat of this rammed café. Rammed, I say, because tonight plays host to XFM Exposure, this shenanigan type thing where XFM expose themselves and a bunch of rosy-cheeked up-and-comers to paying voyeurs. In an artistic sense, of course. Jeremy Warmsley, then, keeps gobs wide open for all the right reasons. Entrancing us with the kind of stare where you’re not entirely sure if he likes your presence or not, he’s cardigan’d, glasses’d and equal amounts humble postgraduate with assured, creative upstart.

Stripped of his band and bleeps, we’ve got this one smooth-skinned, hyper-intelligent looking, slightly acerbic boy with petal-flower lips and an acoustic to focus our attentions upon. Using the guitar to accentuate rhythms rather than dictate melodies, he rapidly clenches at it, tears, scrapes, then whips his hand away almost as soon as he begins, as though allergic, as though resentful. ‘Dirty Blue Jeans’ especially is a cherryripe ditty for the picking, glowing with youth, ambition and a sweet, sweet sadness.

Before all of this occurred, little blonde-bob-haired Lucy – tiny, petite Lucy (she’s really small, basically) – of Lucy & The Caterpillar quips and giggles at me in the loos about how drunk she is but how, heck, she’s got to go onstage, biting her scarlet lips. “What band are you in?” I ask. She’s not. She’s on her own, as I discover after she trips upstairs and nervously entertains a rather taken aback audience. Oh, and Napoleon iiird walks all over the entire evening, of course, with his demented tape loops of swooping, multi-layered noise-pools and blissful, drunk and disorderly pop songs. Naturally, he’s affixed a strobe light into the belly of his guitar. As you do. Being one of the best things ever is what this guy DOES for a living.


Resources:
get.cape web
Napoleon IIIrd
Lucy And The Caterpillar

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