Monday, September 28, 2009

Hungry Ghosts Reunion Show with support from The Mooches

Quite often here in Hong Kong you will have gigs at venues rather than going to an established 'gig venue'. Sometimes the atmosphere/decor of a place is an okay match for the gig and other times you just take what you're given. Then there is the rare occasion where the venue and gig were made for each other! Sometimes you'll find this in the most unusual places. Case in point, The Hungry Ghosts reunion show at Bassment. Playing their role as an equally fitting support act were 'Wash'n'Roll' act, The Mooches. There was something about this hidden bar with spray paintings of Yoda and Super Obama on the walls hosting an indie rock event. It being very small of course meant the audience were huddled closer together, making it impossible not to get a slight groove on if the people flanking you are having a wee bit of a dance.

It wasn't that long ago that I remember being at the Hungry Ghosts goodbye show to be honest, but hey, I'm not complaining. Just like the other 30 or so people in the container that is Bassment, we were just happy to be hearing their songs live again. That is after all, the best way to hear Hungry Ghosts tunes. The night wasn't entirely about the Ghosts being very briefly back however. The Mooches themselves have had somewhat of a lengthy break from playing their millisecond long songs. They were also celebrating the gig as their first one out of The Wanch, so kudos to them for that!

The Mooches took to the ... it seems silly to call the allocated corner of the room complete with practice amps set up on red plastic tables, a stage, but anyway, they got up there at about 10PM to kick off the evenings entertainment.

For a make shift set up, the sound was surprisingly quite balanced and generally not bad at all. The vocals were a little quiet but you can't win them all right? The Mooches set played out more like a jam session, but once again with the environment we were in, this style was quite fitting to the general indie D.I.Y theme of the night. Their outfit consists of scene veteran Arthur leading the charge on vocals and guitar. How many bands is this now Art? Tiffany of the Hungry Ghosts also contributes bass in this band. Jasmine, who may just be Hong Kong's equivalent of Meg White features on the drums. She shares the same preference of the floor tom and snare combination that Meg White utilities often. Adriana is the chick on the keys and Ross who plays with Arthur in Live Fast Die plays the, uhh, Washboard. It DOES have gold lettering and a pickup on it, therefore it is a serious instrument! Their songs averaged about 2 minutes in length and are generally quite quirky. Their highlights were a song that repeated the lyric 'I hate this place and the people in it.' Go on the angst! Others were their 'You Make Me Hot' song and an instrumental that was played towards the end. Good old Mooches were always charming, and seemed to have the room entertained. Good on 'em.

After the turn around and more 150 dollar open bar abuse on my part, the Hungry Ghosts started their set. It wasn't long before you realised that you missed having these guys in the scene. They offer something completely different yet very familiar at the same time. There's something to be said for their ability to control and portray emotions in their song writing and translate it to a live performance. It leaves no shadow of a doubt that the foursome (Luke-Guitar+Vox,Paul-Guitar+Keys+Vox, Tiffany-Bass+Vox, Mike-Drums) work like clockwork together, and are very talented.

One of the main factors why the band decided to put their elusive project on hold for a while, was due to Mike having to leave the country. With him being back behind the kit tonight, you can see why they didn't just get someone to take his role and continue. He is an essential piece that is the Hungry Ghosts puzzle. It's the way he drives the song's with the guitars falling into place around his drum patterns, which were always spot on. Don't wanna give the guy too much praise, but he is fucking awesome. Other things to note are the great interplay between Paul and Luke on guitar. I feel that I HAVE noted this before in a previous post so I won't go into it in detail again. But again, never a dull moment there. Their set consisted of all the usual songs that Hungry Ghosts fans have come to love, with their highlights being both versions of 'This Noise' (which featured some of the Mooch members coming up to sing along in the chorus) and what stole the night,: 'White Bee.' Some drunk bald dude not to far from me was creaming himself at how good that one sounded. And then it was all over! It really is a shame to not have the Ghosts constantly gigging anymore. But at the same time, it made this one off show a special one. If you claim yourself a member or a fan of the HK scene. You are quite simply an idiot for not turning up.


After an unnecessarily long break, the blog is back in action. The past few months have been taken up by band commitments and summer holidays. Speaking of summer, not long to go now till this ungodly heat wave is over. Win!