Oh, the last night of the tour – the revelry, the camaraderie, and the celebration of all that was and is soon to be lost. That final night, a gathering storm of expectation, commemoration and salutation. Old friends and new love, come to rejoice with a band at the end of a long, long road. And so it was for the Cave Singers at London’s ULU in darkest November, 2009. Supported by achingly-hip Woods and the modest Espers on this, the third incarnation of the Shred Yr Face tour – which last year brought Fucked Up to these shores – Cave Singers play to their faithful.

With two albums now behind them the group has grown from the shadow of its former incarnation (the briefly celebrated Pretty Girls Make Graves) and is now a promising live spectacle in its own right. Playing as a trio - with singer-songwriter Pete Quirk joined by Derek Fudesco on bass and Marty Lund on drums – the group offer rousing interpretations of their Americana tinged country rock; they are all whisky stained, twilight brawlers, unapologetically sentimental and wry.

Although this is not one of London’s most flattering venues – with poor lighting, often disinterested club crowds and distant bars – there is an immediate, cheering of the mood when the group take the stage. Espers had lulled the half-capacity crowd – perhaps something to do with the £17.50 cost of tickets – into a false sense of calm, but this is quickly reversed.

Tonight’s is a democratic performance, with the star-quality of Quirk’s vocals allowed to shine alongside the delicate but persistent finger picking of Fudesco on guitar and Lund’s expressive drumming. Choices from 'Invitation Songs' and the more recent 'Welcome Joy' are played in equal measure, with the older material receiving a more positive reception. The Cave Singers almost irresistibly invite foot-stomping jams with their more upbeat material, and as 'Seeds of the Night' and 'Royal Lawns' and thrown to the crowd the spectacle reaches its high.

'New Moments' – a fans’ favourite from the debut album – sees Brad Cohen, lead singer of Woods (inexplicably dressed as Bat Man) join the group on stage, before the whole group return to the stage for a rousing, tambourine drive finale. It certainly was a night for celebration, and despite the modest numbers the Cave Singers delivered.














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