Cococo Apocalypso – launch of Nottingham first Weimar dada cabaret night

November 12, 2008 at 7:00 pm (Cococo Apocalypso, electronic music, Hypnotique) (, , , )

By HypnotiqueCococo Apocalypso Nov 11 Kunt and the Gang

Cococo Apocalypso Nov 11 Kunt and the Gang

Last night saw the launch of Cococo Apocalypso, a night billed as Nottingham’s first Weimar-inspired dada cabaret night.  I decided to start up this night – mixing up surreal comedy, theatre and electronic music with a fine dose of neo-punk attitude – because basically they say if you’re not part of a scene then start your own.  It’s a conduit to bringing the interesting artists I know, and a few acts I’m associated with, to my home town as a neat little Midlands tour stop-off, when previously they would have bypassed Nottingham for more experimental-friendly bigger cities north and south.  And because fuck all interesting seems to happen musically here.  And because life is very long and dull and you have to amuse yourself somehow.

The night was a beard-themed cabaret night celebrating Kunt and the Gang‘s wonderful “Men WIth Beards (What are they hiding?)” EP launch.  Read the full sordid press release (which sadly didn’t make it it into the Evening Post, nor the Left Lion an, allegedly, local culture mag) for the whole shebang.

The Chameleon Cafe, an interesting art-friendly bolt hole off the town’s Market Square run by eccentric Blues obsessed landlord Nick, who wants to get more theatrical and ‘weird shit’ stuff going down in the cafe.   There was a rather ‘eclectic’ exhibition in the venue which ranged from scenic watercolours, photos of dolphins to some fab large portraits of strippers and men in S&M gear – a perfect backdrop to the creative smorgasbord which was brought forth.

A few keen chaps and chapettes did go with the beard theme, and some had even brought very elegantly handmade strap-ons with some stick-on moustaches for other members of the audience to play around with to experience life as a man with a beard (an experiment Kunt has been living and blogging for over 7 weeks, despite only rustling up a 17-year-old’s bum fluff effect).

I kicked off proceeding with a “fuck off” noisy set as Ms Hypnotique, before EssexPubOrgy geezer Alix Sinclair, performing as the ‘large poet’, did some very witty poetry including caravaning in Derbyshire, looking suprisingly like Tiny Tim.      Later on he was joined by a guitarist to do some songs with a lot of fun props including beards, parrots and an effigy of Jesus with subjects including Rolf Harris, drug-induced witches of Harem and pirates.  This was a lot of fun and suprisingly melodic.

James Hately performed “stubble busting”, contemplating how shaving animals may reveal another animal underneath, and the same with celebrities – like shaving Russell Brand reveals Amy Winehouse.  I wondered if shaving Kunt (and the Gang) might reveal Sinitta underneath – or perhaps Gary Glitter.

Sleaford Mods, aka Jason Williamson, was a definite highlight of the proceedings.  He delivered a venom-filth fuelled rant insulting everyone and anything that crossed his path – including abusing the audience: “What are you cunts clapping for?” – which strangely just made you love him more.  I love J’s music – sure it’s bleak, acutely offensive and sometimes just too close to home (like ‘Teacher Faces Porn Charge’ about buying discount beer and pizzas from the cornershop) but it really strikes you in the heart and makes you feel uplifted, cathartic and cleansed afterwards – like a mudbath of the mind.  And you can’t beat a bit of ultra-violence I say…

Kunt and the Gang, coming on to Gary Glitter’s “Do You Wanna Be In My Gang?”, entertained us for a non-stop 40 min hit parade of his unique blend of songs about wanking and crying (including over a polaroid of an ex-girlfriend who died), Carol Voderman and even asked the question “Chips or Tits?” (how’s a man to decide!).

Beards off to Kunt, the poor dear was horribly poorly after picking up a virus from a baby that shit itself near him, yet the trooper got through the full set complete with star jumps – and with the help of Little Kunt, his conjunctial twin brother – for the wonderful alternative love duet “Fred and Rose“.   I’ve seen Kunt loadsa times, so I’d be interested on the impressions of those who haven’t seen him before – but curiousity let to some belly laughs and he soon charmed the throngs, winning him a few new devotees.

Coincidentally, I found out that we chose our timings well: Nov 11 is the date of Martinmas.  According to Nottingham performance artisans Reactor this is when:

“In the 4th century AD, the Bishop St. Martin was walking to Rome on a pilgrimage. He encountered Satan and was mocked by him. As punishment St. Martin turned the devil into a donkey and rode the lazy beast for the remainder of his journey. The Donkey cursed him and spoke in palindromes.

A timely parallel with the devilish shape-shifting and tongues of palindromes of the night ( Reactor are looking for Secret Members to join their 12 month Martinmas clan btw. )

Overall I think a fun night and worthwhile endeavour and thanks to those who came for making this a memorable first experiment.  If you came, let us know what you think and what you’d like to see if you came again or suggestions of acts to perform.  If you took any photos or videos stick em up on Flickr, your blog, YouTube wherever and post the link in the comments.

You can also sign up to the Cococo Apocalypso email list or visit the website on MySpace.


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Babyslave’s post-ATP nightmare gig

January 8, 2008 at 3:21 pm (Babyslave shows, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , )

So inspired were the ‘slave by the musical delights of ATP, we tried to recreate it back home. Quite literally, by staging a full scale gig in the (damp) wine cellar of chez Ms Hypnotique in her abode next to a windmill in Nottingham.

Nightmare before Xmas flyer

Billed as ‘The Nightmare before Christmas: a post-ATP gig for goths, gouls and fools‘, in addition to a Victorian/gothic dress code and absinthe cocktails, we were joined by:

Benjamin Franklin

Benjamin Franklin plays (photo copyright Pieter Last)

A visitor from Belgium, Bejamin Franklin enthralled with a sit down (necessary as ceiling was only 5′ 10) zone out set of spacey guitars, minature keyboards and tape delays.

John Callaghan

John Callaghan is a Christmas treeJohn callaghan christ knows what he's doing

John Callaghan and his glowing pants
(photos above: Pieter Last)

John Callaghan in neon
(photos above by Laura Partridge)

Good friend of the ‘slave Mr John Callaghan, resplendant in glow sticks, neon net curtains, half-suit/half-nude and union jack g-string to give a taste of tracks from his new album ‘It Might Never Happen‘.


‘Slave photos by Pieter Last:

babslave masked Charlie machine plays violin

Slave photos by Laura Partridge:

Joe Ladyboy takes charge

Charlie machine plays violin

Joe Ladyboy masked

Charlie machine plays violin masked

Joe Ladyboy takes charge

Hypnotique did a number but not enough time/willpower for a full set, and the ‘Slave concluded with a one-off rendition of the entire debut album (“Babyslave”), top to tail. Kind of therapeutic, ‘getting it out of the system’ to move onto the next phase.

Trying out a very different look featuring ball gowns and masks, the minimalism of a damp basement was quite possible the perfect place for it – though jesus knows what some of the guests/neighbours/visiting cats made of it – Nottingham hasn’t seen the likes of this subversion before.

Little of interest seems to happen in Nottingham nowadays, but if you can’t become a member of ‘the club’ then start your own – and tonight we did. The first of many self-initated ‘slave based ‘happenings’.But after seven years playing in rock n roll bands, I still find myself humping gear up three flights of stairs (but this time in my own home).

Thanks to those who came, and thanks to those who didn’t for making the night exclusively legendary.

Happy new year – and remember – only the critic can critique.

Ms Hypnotique

the critic cat

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