Mr Kyps, Poole
It’s Friday night, the night before New Year’s Eve and a now yearly “hoedown” has come around once more. Keeping the format the same as last year the venue have kept it as a freebie before 9pm. I swear there’s 200 early birds this year!
Opening up are Weymouth trio The Surfin’ Birds. This band are well known around these parts having been the support for many a band over the years, while making a good name for themselves in the locality far and wide. They open with a Surf-influenced number and set out their stall early. What follows is a whole range of influences ranging 60’s, Surf-Rock, Psych, Rockabilly, Dirty R’n’R, Hillbilly, Country-(add or delete where necessary)!! No one song sounds the same and they certainly keep us entertained.
The affectionately monikered “Squidhead” (bass) plays loud and heavy almost throughout while Paul (guitar/vox) takes the majority of vocal duties and shapeshifting. Liam (drums) delivers more than one heavy solo tonight while his symbol-led bashing is equally impressive. I have to say though they save the best ’til last with the only song I recognise. A more than decent cover to depart on they deliver a rampant “Molly’s Lips” (The Vaselines), and despite calls for an encore depart the stage.
Next up are Lymington’s finest, back after a 5-year hiatus. Buoyed by a huge local following Peeping Toms are ready for the big return. They open with old favourite “She’s Not Like That” and it’s as if they’ve never been away. “Big Nose” follows before they debut some new material. Shaun (vox) is his usual self, direct and angry looking as he snarls the vocals. The first of 4 newie’s (certainly to me anyway) is “You Wanna Hope She Don’t” – it’s personal and honest and hits the mark. “Underachiever” follows and again it’s the powerful Toms at their best – those 5 years haven’t gone to waste. “Splinter” precedes “Feel like a Million Dong” before they head back to more familiar territory. The Glam Rock drumming (Spike) greets the intro to “Sunday Stripper”, and there is now movement in the room. The pit then goes crazy to the energetic “Attention Seeking Missile” which is simply huge tonight. Shaun then announces the first song they ever wrote, about a local “tradesman”! “The Ballad of Nogger Sproggett” is pure theatre as they comfortably deliver the slow/fast formula in storytelling fashion. As we catch our breaths they end with live favourite, a cover of Enrique Iglesias’s “Hero”. It’s the classic singalong song and this crowd go wild for the last time. It’s as if the Toms have never been away. A new bassist Mikey Beardwood is the only change to the previous line-up and they appear ready to take on the world again. And for that we should be grateful!
And so to the headliners. Pronghorn this year are greeted by an even larger crowd than last, and boy do they get us moving. Literally on opener “Swamp Winch” the slow gentle build up to the rampant “oompah stomping” of the song gets this crowd moving early doors. Gentle foot-tapping gives way to a full-on mosh pit as this Kyps crowd start to move their feet. John’s powerhouse drumming is a feature early on and throughout while Fi’s furious fiddle is played at 90mph! Lamma (vox/banjo) is grinning like a Cheshire cat who lapped up the cream-grinning from ear to ear he simply smiles his way throughout the opener. “Banjo Case” soon follows and Pronghorn are truly in their groove. We are cajoled into singing along and being NYEE it’s just one big knees up. “Mardi Gras” is an early highlight but there are simply no lowlights-this is pure sweat-drenched adrenaline. “Hej Sokoly” is simply a prelude to crowd favourite “Digging My Potatoes” which sees continued mayhem down in the pit, but remaining friendly. I’m reminded throughout of those halcyon days of old from Endorset when Pronghorn owned the stage, as they do tonight.
Near the sets’ end Lamma takes time to thank the staff-soundman, lighting, bar staff et al. He also praises us the audience for the interaction. And the classics keep on a coming. “Gypsy Liver” is another highlight but the two numbers they end on are the crowd pleasers. “Boscum Stamp” comes with the customary question, with Lamma lauding those who have travelled far and wide thru’ the fog to attend tonight. They end on a high with “The Cullen” with Lamma’s throaty vocal a strong feature. He leads the crowd interaction as we all follow suit. The slow intro builds up into the fast, banjo/fiddle-led main part of the song. This Kyp’s crowd are going wild for the last time and that folks is that. Another packed house witnesses a local hoedown which I’m sure will be repeated this time next year. Pronghorn prove that even after all these years they can pull a large crowd and put on a great show. Everyone leaves happy and we look forward to their return. Another classic gig at Dorset’s best venue-Happy New Year everyone.
Digging my Potatoes
She’s Not Like That
You Wanna Hope She Don’t
Feel Like a Million Dong
Ballad of Nogger Sprockett
Hero (Enrique Iglesias)
Words by Ross a Ferrone (Did you know I got a Record Player for Christmas?)
Pictures by Jon Musselwhite (AKA Ministry Jon)
Videos by Dave Chinery (Chinners)