Mohobishopi @ Dublin Castle, London (2/09/99)

You have to be young and reasonably good looking to get away with it. Mohobishopi are both and they do it with style. They're all wearing ridiculous shades, the bass player sporting a yellow sun-visor (which they all wore at the last gig I saw them), the drummer has bleached blonde hair and the singer's wearing glittery eyeshadow. Which is all quite surreal when you're playing to 20 people (13 of whom are your mates) on a Thursday night.

However, drummer, guitarist, bass player...all very fluid concepts tonight as Mohobishopi swap instruments throughout the set. Even the bass player, ostensibly the 'cool' quiet one, plays guitar for the last song ("Fingers in Your Eyes"---the only 'slow one,' which they actually butcher until it becomes a parody of itself). They sound like a squealing bastard child of Cable who's not quite got the hang of the melody and clever guitar bits but rather likes the basic idea if only it could do it a bit faster. With keyboards. And samplers. Shame their singing sounds a bit like the bloke from Placebo. On the plus side, their gigs are almost as shambolic and funny as the early Mudhoney, except you suspect Mohobishopi can actually play.

The funny thing about Mohobishopi is that they sound disappointingly weak on record so far. But go and see them live before they go all grown-up and muso on us and I guarantee you won't be disappointed (unless you're very old or very pretentious or---God forbid---both). If nothing else, you won't be bored. Their enthusiasm and playfulness is infectious. Their songs can accommodate the shortest of concentration spans. They will even entertain you with relentless banter (last time it was about Cornish pasties or the lack thereof in Cardiff, this time about the impossibility of not liking the Fall, because 'They are The Fall!'. They tend to just ramble on, bouncing ideas off each other. Drummer: 'Did you see that last band? The Big Striptease? Disappointing. I wanted to see some COCK!' And then he winces, remembering that his bandmate's mum and dad are sat in the corner. At one point they even ask if Steve Lamacq is in, as if he follows them around the country.)

They are basically stupid but that's stupid in an endearing sort of a way. Once finished, they run to the 'dressing room' beaming, as if they've just played Wembley, not the head office of the toilet circuit. (Radiant Kovacs)

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