klepsydra asked me last year if I'd take on the band's website, which you can admire at donutsh.com, so I have a proprietary interest in their rise to stardom.
Thus I met shep_shepherd and arakinuk at De Hems (which has lost my custom because they no longer serve jenever), and after a drink and a curry we strolled down to the Comedy Pub just off Leicester Square.
I don't know when I was last at a gig with a better atmosphere. I knew almost everyone in the downstairs bar (including bhata's lovely mum), and we filled the place with cheers and clapping.
I'd only experienced the songs in MP3 form (available for a listen on the website). As I suspected, the band is a zillion times better live: shazomei deep in the zone on keyboard, Blacksnip drumming with a solemn expression while actually having tremendous fun, bhata exuding cool and sex in that annoyingly effortless way he has, Ullan bringing the slightly threatening hip in his River Island military-style jacket, and klepsydra growling lyrics with all the presence of a big cat.
Most of the numbers I'd painstakingly HTMLised them for the lyrics page, and I felt a sort of avuncular pride for them.
We stayed to watch the next band, Model Railway Exhibition, as they explained all their friends had chosen to watch football rather than support them.
During their set, shazomei observed "I've never seen anyone clap as enthusiastically as you!" and I realised that I applaud in exactly the way that used to embarrass me almost to the point of suicide when I was a teenager and my dad did it. Argh!
I had resolved that I certainly wasn't going to do any roadie stuff, having had a lot of this in 2000-2003 too. Yet somehow at the end of the night I found myself lugging an amp up a flight of stairs. Nobody made me; it was sheer force of habit.
I'm happy to report that the number of attendees was sufficient to net the band the promise of a sequel, so Piccadilly should be seeing them again soon.