Cattle And Cane: Ku Bar, Stockton-on Tees, Friday 26th Of February

“I recall a bigger brighter world, A world of books, And silent times in thought”.

They do have a line up of 3 boys and a girl. They do write superb tunes and play acoustic guitars. But they’re not from the sunny streets of Brisbane but the rain lashed roads of Middlesbrough. They are Cattle and Cane. Last night I braved the elements and the ungodly stage time of 11:30 to venture across the river to the Ku Club in Stockton to see, in the flesh, the band I have been glued to on myspace. Firstly, the club. Situated a few doors down from the Arc. It has just been done up and tonight was the first live band of the year. In its not so distant past it has been witness to such greats as the Arctic Monkeys. Free entry, a great sound system and reasonable drinks makes it a venue I would certainly go back to. And Ben Myers spinning the discs. What more could a young boy want? Go to to see what delights they have in store for the future.

Cattle and Cane are made up of  3 members of the Hammill family. Joe is lead vocalist and plays guitar. Helen, vocals, keyboards and mandolin. Frank plays bass and sings and Paul Wilson sings and plays drums. Tonight they were joined by Liam Finn on violin. (He is a member of Napoleon Nightingale more of them in the future).

I managed to secure a set list and here it is for those of you who like that sort of thing.

(1) Belle

(2) Falling over you

(3) Spanish

(4) This is where we go from

(5) Cold as stone

(6) Lift me up

(7) Sold my Soul

(8) The Poacher

Now you could lump them in with a lot of the new breed of folky types; Mumford and Sons, Stornoway, The National to name but 3. And yes, there are elements of all 3 but I also hear The Go Betweens, Orange Juice, Pale Fountains, Grizzly Bear and with the lush vocals of Helen, a nod to Lisa Hannigan (her of Damien Rice fame). They are musically and lyrically akin to Damien Rice and other solo stars but the full band sound gives them an extra punch lacking in the solo world. They have only performed a handful of times but already they are building up a following and it is not difficult to see why. Go to their myspace site and check out where they are playing as well as studio versions of Belle and Sold my Soul. If you sign up to their mailing list you can receive a superb version of This is where we go from.

Tonight my favourites were the final 2 tracks; Sold my Soul, which I was aware of, and Poacher , which was new to my ears. It was difficult to pick out a weak song. They are very strong musically and a tight live unit. I expect great things of them in the future. We here at the northernline are looking to work more closely with them. Watch this space. Speaking of space, there are more photos of the gig on Facebook. Go check them out at our Facebook page; The NorthernLine.

Cattle and Cane were the second band to get the full Northernline treatment. If you are an upcoming band and want a bit of exposure, free t-shirts and a chance of exciting future developments then get in touch with us. Or write your own review, take your own photos, get involved. The North will rise again!

By peter on February 28, 2010

Check out all the pics

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