Residency Farewell and Thank Yous
Last Friday, the 28th of February, we put on the final show of our residency at The Windmill Brixton supported using funds from The Arts Council England. This consisted of five shows over ten months, with over twenty other acts booked personally by us and the support of countless other people with the promotion and smooth running of the nights. Poeticat would like to extend a massive thank you to our helpers, the venue, the other acts and, of course, the incredible audiences who came and made these events so unforgettable!
Le Crowd by Andrej Chudy
When we announced our residency last May we promised that we would use it as a platform for releasing new recordings, experimenting with our live show and trying out new material. Now that the residency is over, we thought this might be a good time to feed back on this progress which we hope will work its way into our upcoming gigs.
Firstly, over this period we focused on writing new songs like Crows, Gossip and crowd favourite A Letter to David Cameron.
We also launched three new singles: double A-sides ‘Centre of the Concrete Square’ and ‘Kind Words Soft Kill’, and our epic manifesto ‘3rd Arm’. These will be available along with a couple of other tracks on our EP Smash the Floor due for release in early May!
Centre of the Concrete Square (created in collaboration with Mutant Cow Productions)
We also experimented with covers for the first time, doing our own takes on David Bowie’s Let’s Dance and Land Down Under by Men at Work which featured the incredible flute gymnastics of guest performer Papa Chango.
Part of our ethos as a band has always been to try to make audiences feel included in the performance and the idea of the Response Song was an attempt to take this even further during our residency. At each show we asked the crowd a question (such as 'What is the best song lyric of all time?'), the answers to which would be turned into a piece of music or Response Song. These went down with varying success, but were always a lot of fun to perform!
Here’s one of the better ones:
From footage by Monika Krochmal
Throughout the residency we experimented with various guitar and vocal pedals to try hone our sound and compliment the words with the most expressive and exciting music possible. We also brought in the use of samples (you will now be able to hear David Cameron droning on at each of our gigs before we pulverize him with a mix of screams, drums and guitars!). Our final residency brought in a massive paradigm shift as we replaced the trusty cajon with a drum kit for the first time in our five year existence. Judging by the audience’s response we’ll be sticking with the drum kit in the future!
The Other Acts
During the course of the residency we hand picked poets, musicians and bands who we’d been impressed by to create the most unique and engaging nights possible. We were never disappointed and one of the most frequent comments from friends and audience members was how good the rest of the line-up was. Here they are again (roughly) in order of appearance!
Mangoseed by Andrej Chudy
Abi Palmer by Andrej Chudy
Bird Radio by Andrej Chudy
Anyone who has ever been to The Windmill will know about The Shed, or Reggae Shack as it was called in one of its incarnations. This is a small room round the back of the pub, which may once have been a garage, but is now home to a number of ragged sofas and tables and a plush TV screen! During the course of the residency we had our artist in residence, Elisavet Kalpaxi turn this space into a 3D labyrinth, a glow in the dark cave and a room of mirrors. It’s fair to say people (including the pub’s promoter Tim) were pretty blown away by these installations and they became one of the most exciting features of the night! You can see them all here (complete with an interactive video!).
Elisavet Kalpaxi with a 3D mask in her incredible 3D labyrinth inspired by children’s books.
Halloween was a perfect excuse to get creative with some kitchen knives and decorate the shed with pumpkins and sweets! We’re more treat than trick kind of people…
Our final residency saw the shed turned into a small private cinema for the debut screening of the video for our latest single ‘3rd Arm’. The cinema experience came with pop corn and freshly made candy floss and audience members were treated to a small exhibition of the props and costumes and a chance to mingle with the stars of the video!
Here it is again for anyone who missed out on the red carpet treatment:
Third Arm (created in collaboration with Mutant Cow Productions)
Poeticat by Andrej Chudy