For a while, it looked doubtful that I could even go on this trip, since adverse weather conditions kept delaying my flight -- I had hoped to arrive in London in the forenoon, but ended up thanking my lucky stars that I made it there around half four. When I got to the Lord Jim, it was strangely reassuring to find that nothing had changed from my last visit: there was same surly desk clerk whose greeting consists primarily in asking for the balance to be paid up front, the same workmen who were still doing up the same rooms and, surprise, surprise, the same pokey little room on the first floor I'd shared with roissy0 before, where this time I found anonypooh in residence -- who'd even left me the same bed to sleep in! After the pre-gig squee and welcome drink, we made our way to the Troubadour where we were greeted by a very different looking Davina, whose changed hair colour required we look twice, and then we moved on to our usual spot in the back room where pohewa was already waiting for us to join her. Going into the club, we were pleased to see the placard outside advertising the gig, but no signs in the window or flyers on the table, so I asked permission to put up some posters for CoRo and Corn Mo at the same time as ordering my coffee, and Julia did the necessary. It wasn't long before we were joined by love_by_137, miss_fairfax, and a girl called Andrea who is a new fan, having discovered the band at the Milton Keynes party a few days earlier. Geoff came in fairly early too, and Mezzer, and so the Street Team was almost complete, just missing freakspawn, who was still in New York. Then quietlychaotic and party were spotted as well, and after we'd had a quick bite to eat, the doors opened and we took up our positions: Christy on the fire escape, Davina to the side and Geoff, Mezzer and Andrea in front of the stage, and Nai, Jo, Jo, Julia and me at the back of the room near the sound booth. The Germans took their usual place next to the stage door, too. It's funny how we all have our little preferences when we troop into the Troubadour's basement...
Corn Mo came on and played all our favourites, Lollipop, Angel, Busey Boy, and as he'd hired a piano, had Jordan join him on trumpet for My Best Friend. We joined him in a rousing chorus of We Are The Champions and then of course, he ended his set with the ultimate crowd pleaser Havi Nagila Monster. If you haven't heard this before, and you want to know what that sounds like, check it out on http://www.myspace.com/cornmo -- I promise you, you won't regret it!
I sneaked a look at CoRo's set list and thought there were no surprises there, but boy! was I wrong...They opened with Normal Sea as a duet sung by Adam and Eric, and proceeded to spoil us with new renditions of old favourites. There's a lovely intro to More Than Once Before It Takes now, with Adam playing the glock; How To Lose is no longer a 3-way a capella song, but works very well with the new musical accompaniment even if it owes a lot to the Firefly-theme according to the old adage that 'good writers borrow, great writers steal'; and Belfast was sprinkled this time with some Tears For Fears (Shout) and Depeche Mode (People Are People). Corn Mo got back on stage to help them with You Ain't Going Nowhere, Eric's solo for the night was Victims, and for the finale, a rip-roarin' version of I'm So Bored With the USA made all the more enjoyable for Jordan ripping open his shirt in true rock 'n' roll fashion! Then, contrary to expectation, they didn't do an off-mic song to end the evening with, but sang a traditional country tune called Put My Little Shoes Away, telling the tale of a little girl on her deathbed that tells her mother to put her little shoes away to let her playmates know she won't be joining them ever again.
After the gig, I purchased Eric's solo album, and we hung around with our friends and acquaintances and Corn Mo, who did very well on the merchandise and seemed to have made several new fans, some of whom came back the following night. Chucking out time came, and we went back to the hotel where we stayed for a drink and a piece of Geburtstagkuchen with the Germans, before heading up to our own room and Morpheus's arms.
ETA: This is what you get in trying to remember three shows -- you mix them up in your head. According to the audio evidence, it was Offstage Lines that had the snippets of Shout and People Are People in it, and it was played the following night, not this one.