Never The Bride
Saturday 8th February 2020
The Green Note, Camden, London
This was the third time I’ve seen Never The Bride live, having only discovered them over the last few years, and their stomping performance at the 2018 Ealing Blues Festival was a highlight, arguably stealing the best show of that weekend.
So, heading up on the Northern Line to Camden Town, I slip into the Rock famous pit stop of the ‘World’s End’ to grab a quick beer and large doses of Iron Maiden. This may not be the ideal for an intimate show that the Green Note venue provides, but it is traditional! A three-minute walk West to enter the Green Note, just past the Dublin Castle on the right, takes you into a cosy cellar brickwork room, and as it’s a sell-out tonight, you have to arrive early for seating.
The stage is probably best suited for two is party - four is a crowd, where Nikki and Catherine opt for the latter to provide an electric show. Drummer Fergus Gerrand is squeezed into the left-hand and guitarist Maxime Obadia seated right. Fergus has quite a CV touring with the likes of Duran Duran, Bryan Adams, Robert Plant to name a few, along with recording with Madonna, Sting and Peter Gabriel. Frenchman Maxime played in the James Morrison band, but is also a pianist and record producer in his own right.
The show is split into two sets the first based on their early releases ‘Betty’, ’2 into 1’ and the Bond themed ‘Living Tree’ covered by the one and only Shirley Bassey! Nikki often gets the Janis Joplin comparisons, helped along more so by covering ‘Mercedes Benz’ and ‘Piece Of My Heart’ with a dramatic heart touching rendition of ‘It’s A Man’s Man’s Man’s World’. The only song off their current album, ‘For Better For Worse’, is ‘Web Of A Stranger’ airing mid-set.
Part two opens with Catherine taking over the vocals and slipping on her 12-string guitar for ‘Mind How You Go’, which leads to a more up to date second half. Track of the night for me is the excellently titled ‘Don’t Trudge Mud In The House Of Love’ with it’s dirty Blues/Rock groove followed by ‘Young & Old’, ’The Girls Are Back In Town’ (No, not a Thin Lizzy spin), ’Loser’, Led Zep’s ‘Whole Lotta Love’, ’Tiger Bay’ and ‘Life On Mars?’ for the encore. Entertainment accomplished and the crowd left thoroughly appreciative with what they’d experienced and a shot of Nikki’s tequila.
Personal favourite ‘Everywhere’ which I’d assumed was a standard set lister was not present, but songs can be requested to the band in advance via their Facebook site or their website https://www.neverthebride.com and also go to https://open.spotify.com/artist/5sEn8Q2HErAIjw14YNXRYw?si=79sAiWhUTgGYwzUMivA-RQ