While the line up for all the Arthur’s days events was kept secret, for some of us confusion also surrounded the venues, with the gig that was supposed to be in Pygmalion moved to The Button Factory just hours before things were due to start.
From 17:50 on people started looking at their watches, 17:59 came’¦as did 18:00, and 18:01, but it wasn’t until 18:12 that the announcement was made that the venue had borrowed their clock from Irish Rail, and people raised a glass of the Black Stuff to toast ‘To Arthur’ (with toasts to Martha, Lammas and Parsnips also featuring), and people went back to spreading rumours about who would headline later in the night.
Eight o’clock saw Hoarsebox appear on stage to warm up the crowd. The bands cheery, bouncy, four part harmonies were just what the venue needed to wake everyone up, and remind them that this was, after all, a party.
On arrival at the Button Factory, it would be hard to miss the photo of ‘the Hoff’ sitting on top of an amp, meaning that The Chapters were going to make an appearance at some point. Come 9pm, the band were tuned up and launched into ‘Juice’ followed by ‘Automobiles’. The band also announced that their next single was going to be ‘Moving’ before giving it a play, and a new song, ‘Theodore Interrupted’ got its first live airing.
The final song, ‘Trying To Get Ahead’ saw Ross (lead vocals) throw his guitar aside and take the microphone into the audience, in what one can only hope was an attempt to find people to sing along while the rest of the band looked on and laughed. As the group walked off stage (to chants of more), it was obvious that they have been working on their live performance and stage presence.
And so it was time to wait for the headline act, with rumours about who exactly was going to play. As five chairs were put on the stage, and the drums removed, it became obvious that the gig was going to finish off unplugged.
Shortly after ten, three well dressed lads walked on stage, and sat themselves down, someone in the front row, curiosity getting the better of him, asked ‘What’s the name of your band?’ ‘¦OK GO was the answer, which still left people slightly confused until someone yelled ‘Play the treadmills song,’ and it finally dawned on people who they were.
They started off with ‘A Million Ways,’ after which their lead singer, Damian, who came across a bit annoyed, claimed that they were under the impression the other bands were going to be unplugged also. They played ‘Shooting The Moon’, and ‘Oh No’, before ignoring the remainder of their setlist and quietly leaving the stage after realising it was one of those gigs in which the support out-did the main act.