Saturday, December 17, 2011
Band of Holy Joy at the Montague Arms
The Band of Holy Joy are surely one of the greatest bands ever to have been associated with New Cross. In the late 1980s they were fairly massive on the indie scene with their lush Brechtian/Brelish/folk-tinged tales, but they split up in 1993.
Next week, on Thursday December 22nd, they are playing at the Montague Arms. Obviously if you loved them then you will want to see them now. But apart from nostalgia, why bother? Well since they reformed they have been putting out some fine new music - their new album How to Kill a Butterfly (Exotic Pylon records) got a 4-star review from Mojo.
I saw BoHJ several times in their heyday (including at both Town and Country Clubs), and have seen them once since they got back together, playing at The Windmill in Brixton a few years ago. I thought singer Johny Brown acually sounded better at the latter. Rather like The Pogues, their music was always 'mature' - back in the day they were young musicians singing as if they old men and women looking back on lifetimes of passion and regret. Now maybe they've grown into the songs!