Chaplin’s, Cellar Bar, Boscombe

Bamboo Vipers

It’s Friday night down at the Cellar as we welcome the return of some old faces in a new guise.

Before the headliners take to the stage, we have none other than local singer/songwriter Drew Allen who opens with some heartfelt songs about love and life. I have to admit I’m not a fan of this style of music but Drew manages to hold my attention with his simple, Folky delivery, and permanent smile. Even when the din of chatter in the room rises above him he just carries on regardless. One song does stand out from the rest – “Caught Up In Aeries Virtue”, despite being overlong. This semi spoken word delivery is a complete contrast to what follows but I imagine Drew may have gained a few more fans this evening!

Drew Allen
Drew Allen 

And so to the headline act. Led by none other than Shaun Morris – mainstay of the Cropdusters/Peeping Toms, the Bamboo Vipers launch into a bass-heavy set of originals on this their first local gig. Having blown off the cobwebs at the ’12 Bar Club in Soho the week before on the graveyard shift, tonight they are afforded headline status!

They open with “Royal British Legion”, a short sharp shock of an opener which sets the scene for what follows. “Banged Up Abroad” one imagines is autobiographical while the Glammy “Swivel-Eyed Loons” ups the aggression-you just know when Shawn is fist-pumping he’s in the zone! The quite hilarious “Shepherd’s Pie” is as comedic as it is wonderful and brings many a smile to this crowd.

Bamboo Vipers
Bamboo Vipers 123

The overall dynamic of this band works really well with John and Al’s guitars complimenting each other. Alex’s basslines are heavy throughout but don’t drown Jake (drums), hidden at the back as the 5 of them jockey for space on this tiny stage. “Roger The Cabin Boy” once again reflects the humour in some of the songs, starting a small moshpit with one punter Jonny Bruce From Pronghorn hilariously taking a tumble – it’s just like the old days! After finishing on the excellent “Alien Friends Reunited” they catch their breath before returning for a 3 song encore. “Wonderful Copenhagen” reminds this reviewer of “80’s Matchbox B-line Disaster” while “The Bee Song” follows. It’s fitting that they end on a Cropdusters number. “Poppin’ Out” gets a wild reaction with more chaos in the moshpit and they exit the stage to great applause. With a local “hometown” gig at the Thomas Tripp Lymington the next evening the band are clearly building up momentum. I feel it’s only a matter of time before bigger stages are the norm.

Royal British Legion
God’s Little Nimby
Wild Flowers
Banged Up Abroad
Crystal Methodist
Swivel Eyed Loons
Chemical Castration
Shepherd’s Pie
Biting Army
Tarzen Cards
Roger The Cabin Boy
Alien Friends Reunited
Wonderful Copenhagen
The Bee Song
Just Poppin’ Out To Fight A War (The Cropdusters)


Band Links

Words By Ross “Jammit O’Reilly” Ferrone
Pictures & Videos By Dave “Can’t Slow down on the old Hoedown” Chinery (Chinners)

Post to Twitter Post to Facebook Post to MySpace