Great to see Steve Beresford and John Butcher last night at my local pub, The Birdcage in Stoke Newington. They were playing with percussionist Will Connor for new monthly art/music night, The Lost And Found Department.
After a short trio set, which I missed through tardiness, each performer played solo. Butcher was on jazzy form, inflecting lilting melodic phrases with flutters and overtones before pelting the crowd violently with jagged squawks. Glad to see the cosiness of his surroundings did nothing to dilute his performance. Beresford was hyperactive behind his table laden with gadgets. Using a variety of sound sources, incl. Walkman, sampler and a little touch-pad synth he controlled with a pen, he cycled through ideas quickly.
The three then took it in turns to play in duos: Connor & Beresford, Beresford & Butcher, Connor and Butcher. Connor took the everything-but-the kitchen-sink approach to percussion, playing a CD rack, a BBQ hood, assorted pots and pans, jam jar lids, bubble wrap…and proved eminently versatile, adapting as comfortably to Beresford's flighty bubbling as to Butcher's hard angles. Finally the trio were reunited, bringing the night to a close in noisy, triumphant style.
Upstairs At The Birdcage is a beautiful, intimate space – plush and comfy like the smoking room in a Victorian gentleman's club (I imagine) – and Lost And Found Dept is a class act to be sure. I'm looking forward to the next instalment.