Mugison, Corsica Studios, 9th July

MugisonAt a guess there are probably a few converted railway arches posing as venues throughout London, Corsica at the Elephant & Castle proudly skips on the ‘converted’ — despite the incongruous picture of Dickie Davies that greets you upon entry and the balsa wood bar, nothing much can hide that you are in fact under a railway.

Thankfully Icelandic sonic engineer Mugison was there to wash away the rattling trains at this intimate gig. Incidentally, ‘intimate’ seems to be the word-du-jour for enticing punters these days, so some scientific checking was required: according to Robert the friendly Nigerian bouncer’s counter, there were 99 people at Corsica, so I reckon this qualifies but then again, when does intimate become embarassing?

This review appears in the latest edition of London’s premier music ‘zine, London Tour Dates.

ltd.JPGIf the crowd was sparse the participation was 100%. Like Gene Simmons of Kiss, Mugison really appreciates the power of a good chant. Opener “Mugiboogie” is a good example but I don’t think I’ve ever seen an audience so readily fall into line with an unfamiliar – but very easy – refrain such as on “Singing, swinging, singing . . . the blues.” A great opportunity for the man to show the delta blues inspiration behind many of the songs on new album “Mugiboogie”, ditto “Jesus is a good name to moan”.

Mugison and his tight four-piece band play outstanding Zeppelin-inspired riffing and sumptuous organ all wrapped up in his very tangible energy and self-belief. Personally I can leave the experimental, growling, wall-of-noise injured lion impressions that occassionally peppered the set, but Mugison’s uncompromising style, great sense of humour and refusal to be anything other than himself shows why he is currently one of the best things to come out Iceland.

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