Piney Gir – Nottingham Social, August 14th
It takes a brave act to tour the UK in the middle of August. It takes an even braver act to schedule the last date of their tour in a strange town on a Tuesday night, before an audience of just under thirty. And it takes an almost heroic act to play that date with a sunny good grace, seemingly untroubled by even the merest flicker of disappointment.
Piney Gir is a Kansas born singer, who moved to London in 1998. Originally an electro-pop act, she started performing her songs in a country style around four years ago, almost on a whim, and hasn’t looked back since.
Backed by a four piece band, and alternating between accordion and melodica, Piney’s stock in trade is a rambunctious “yee-haw” hoedown sound, its pedal steel twang balanced by a rockabilly stomp. It’s essentially good time party music, which needs a lively crowd in order to come into its own.
Without this suitably up-for-it atmosphere, the music was exposed as somewhat one-dimensional. Most songs were played at a similar rattling tempo, with little emotional range. By the end of the short set, what started as an affectionate tribute merely felt like shrill pastiche.