The last time Stimulator played here, we somehow ended up supporting a psychobilly band called Spear Of Destiny. Now call me cautious, but the prospect of wearing bondage trousers complete with skirt, and a bunch of piercings in my face in front of a whole army of partisan rockabillies did not fill me with wonder and joy. Needless to say that tonight’s bill of Rachel Stamp and Stimulator instils me with a lot more confidence. All signs are pointing to a really good Saturday night…….until, having driven 200 miles and arrived at the venue, unloaded mountains of equipment and set it all up, someone asks me where the DAT player is. I start to feel a little uneasy as I realise that I’ve left it in my car – which is back in London!!

Now for those of you who don’t know, a DAT player is a tape deck of sorts, and we use one to provide all the extra sounds, loops and special noises that the drums, guitars and vocals don’t do. In other words, it is a vital part of Stimulators sound. And I’ve left it behind!! This goes down like a Big Mac at a veggieburger stand. To cut a long and boring story short, we decide against cancelling our performance and feel that we can try to play our set with no extra sounds. Just our instruments and voices. And we have never done that before. Not even in rehearsal. So I spend most of the night feeling like a right idiot, and the soundcheck is very weird, and not at all like we are used to hearing.

But the place fills up nicely by the time we go on, and we just go for it. And it sounds ok. I don’t know if it sounded like Stimulator is meant to sound, but the kids liked it, and jumped around like lunatics to show their appreciation, which always goes down well with us. Terry especially, pulls more guitar hero poses than usual and we walk off feeling like we pulled one out of the hat tonight! Low point of the day has obviously got to be my total memory loss around something so important, like the equipment we have to bring with us to a show!! But the highpoint is sitting and talking to a whole group of kids afterwards who totally enjoyed the show. Their enthusiasm made me feel like we did the right thing by trying to carry on and play what we could. Thanx guys – you made my night.