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The Small Fakers

The 1865 Southampton, 6 July 2018

This was the coolest place in Southampton on Friday evening and not just because of the air conditioning. The Small Fakers were back on the south coast playing the whole of the Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake album to celebrate the ground-breaking LP's 50th anniversary. Unfortunately the weather (very hot) and some football on TV meant that the audience was fairly small. However, those who turned up were treated to a superb evening of classic 1960s Mod. The 1865 is a great new venue with air conditioning, a good and inexpensive bar, seating around the edge and plentiful on-street parking.

First on were Ready Steady Who with two Fakers included in the line-up. They play classic Who tracks from 1965-1967 so there' no Tommy or Won't Get Fooled Again. Instead you can imagine you are down a sweaty Goldhawk Club in Shepherd's Bush as the Townshend originals are interspersed with tracks that the Who covered such as Leavin' Here and Good Loving. It's great to hear the LP tracks alongside singles. It's not often you are likely to hear Run Run Run or It's Not True. On the last visit the band played Out of the Street. Dan Taylor even went into first rate Keith Moon mode for I Can See for Miles, the track that made the drums a lead instrument.

The Small Fakers have been going for some time, much longer than the Small Faces! Amazingly, they are getting better and better with each performance and tonight they totally nailed it. The audience were treated to the Small Fakers at their best. It was an absolute treat to hear Ogdens' played all the way through in the correct order. It was always going to be a challenge. The Ogdens' album was put together in the studio over months with overdubs. What's more, the Small Faces never played many of the tracks live. Even the "live" Colour Me Pop special used a pre-recorded backing track. The Small Fakers faced the challenge of reproducing this and there again there is the goobledegook narration of Professor Stanley Unwin. "Side one" of the album is fairly straightforward with some of the tracks having been part of the Small Faces set for some time. Lazy Sunday, Afterglow and Song of a Baker were joined by lesser-played tracks such as Long Agos and Worlds Apart and the title track. Rene the prostitute from London's East End drew a huge cheer bearing in mind we were down in the Southampton docks area. Moving on to "side two" Stanley Unwin's late son provided the narration with the help of an iPhone and the Small Fakers provided the music. The concept required guitar changes with Matt Bond bringing out the acoustic for a few tracks including Mad John. The Small Fakers are making better use of backing vocals and drummer Dan Taylor followed his "Keith Moon" by providing the vocals for the Fly. The album finished with a rousing Happydaystoytown.

The second half of the Small Fakers' set was a greatest hits package with almost all the singles played and one b-side. No-one plays these tracks better than the Small Fakers and the inevitable finale was Tin Soldier and All or Nothing.

The Small Fakers are always worth seeing live and this years is especially worthwhile with the performances of Ogden's Nut Gone Flake.

Ready Steady Who (In No Particular Order) Small Fakers
  • I Can't Explain
  • Run Run Run
  • Substitute
  • So Sad About Us
  • It's Not True
  • I Can See For Miles
  • Leavin' Here
  • A Legal Matter
  • Good Loving
  • The Kids are Alright
  • Pictures of Lily
  • I'm a Boy
  • Anyway Anyhow Anywhere
  • My Generation
  • Ogdens' Nut Gone Flake
  • Afterglow
  • Long Ago And Worlds Apart
  • Rene
  • Song Of A Baker
  • Lazy Sunday
  • Happiness Stan
  • Rollin' Over
  • The Hungry Intruder
  • The Journey
  • Mad John
  • Happydaystoytown
  • What'Cha Gonna Do About It
  • Sha La La La Lee
  • Hey Girl
  • Almost Grown
  • I Can't Make It
  • My Mind's Eye
  • Here Come the Nice
  • Itchycoo Park
  • Tin Soldier
  • All or Nothing

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