Towers Of London
@ Leeds Rios

Donny Tourette, from a bored, tired and blasé Kevin-and-Perry-a-like on the tour bus earlier, has, by the magic of drink, transformed himself into a petulant Kevin-and-Perry-a-like bored teen imitator onstage. The magic properties of drink go on to impel him to chuck the mic stand and twirl the microphone around with a stupidly dangerous look. Sort of like a confused Staffordshire Bull Terrier. It’s a lot like the fixed stare of Sid Vicious.

It detracts from the competent work of the band. Between them they turn out a fusion of Guns and Roses and the Sex Pistols. In fact, if you leave out the attitude, late period Cook, Jones and Vicious would make a similar sound. It’s a big, messy, stupid sound and blasts the blues from my system. The floor is going up and down at the front, thanks to a few energetic fans. But it all hangs on the punchy drums, which allow us to forgive the obvious flaws elsewhere. Dirk Tourette has a happy grin, like Dave Hill out of seventies platform-sole kings, Slade. The bass strums down at balls height while the guitar does the vacant stare trademarked by The Ramones. The Tourettes are the most animated of the band except when Donny stops leaping and is at a loss what else he can do. Twenty-five minutes into the gig, Donny throws himself into the crowd. “Don’t steal my shoes, I’ve only got one pair. I’m not joking”, he whines. Sadly this precedes a godawful acoustic solo from Dirk. Handy hint – tune your guitar before a solo spot! And try and sing in tune with it too….. He sings; “Why’d you have to go and feck it up?” – good question! It was a relief when he plugged back in – volume will cover a number of sins.

Me and Ross Halewood had a debate mid-concert about which of the Tourette brothers had the most talent. After attempting a short list of plus-points, we had to resort to seeing who had the least negatives. It has to be said that Donny has the sulky teen act down pat but it leaves me wondering what he’ll be doing in five years time…. The band want to be the New York Dolls, to be Johnny Thunders faux punks and it is all gloriously dumb. One excited chap is forcibly removed from his crowd surf, punching the air and shouting happily. When it all ends after forty-five minutes, it has been quite enough and they have the sense not to go for an encore. So long as they don’t take themselves seriously, it’s all rather daft and fun.

Ross McGibbon