“Come Talk To Me” - G2 in conversation with Alan Hewitt and Clive Beesley at the Pacific Road Arts Centre Birkenhead on 16th January 2010. Concert photography by Alan Hewitt and Anthony Hobkinson.
I hadn’t had the opportunity to have a chat with the guys in G2 since the Charterhouse gigs which seem half a lifetime ago now and so, I was delighted when their manager; Colin Davies enabled me to have a quick chat with them before this gig….
TWR: So, tell us what you have been up to since we last spoke, it has been a while…
PDL: More gigs but the big one I guess, was here, back in March when
we did the whole of A Trick Of The Tail and Wind & Wuthering, so in terms
of doing something different, presenting the two of those albums back to back
and in running order as on the albums, that was kind of the big event. That
meant learning all the songs off those albums that we didn’t know in the
first place which was a few… four or five or something. In terms of where
the heard work has gone, most of it was at the beginning of 2009, getting ready
for that gig really.
CC: We played those songs two more times and then dumped them!
DW: we reprised them at a few gigs.
TD: Your Own Special Way we have done a few times.
JP: The one which we haven’t managed to get back into the set since that show is Mad Man Moon but that is definitely on the agenda to pull back into the set.
TWR: So, tonight’s show is more of a standardised set, like the one you did before the last Birkenhead gig…?
PDL: Yeah, but it is more than just a standardised show because we have got more Gabriel era stuff in than we might do in a normal show. We have kind of biased it towards the early material because the last time we did the whole of Trick and Wind so we are trying to give people something slightly different.
TWR: Any things you have not done before or not done for a long time…?
DW: Fountain Of Salmacis we are doing tonight and we have only done that probably four times.
TWR: I’m looking forward to that, lads!
TD: You might not when you hear it! (laughs).
PDL: We have only played it live twice, the first time was in Stroud in November.
TWR: Do you draw a line under the period that you want to cover or…?
PDL: Nothing before Trespass has been considered and off Trespass the only thing we have played is The Knife. We haven’t really talked about doing anything else. I don’t think that Trespass is playing to our strengths. People are always calling for The Knife so that is bound to get resurrected soon. We have only played it once live.
JP: Again, there are plans to reintroduce that for at least one show.
PDL: Then probably nothing after Duke but having said that, we haven’t played anything off either Duke or And Then There Were Three for ages so we have a few songs that we know.
TWR: I’m not really surprised because some of those songs are very difficult to play and difficult to sing, Phil has admitted that himself. I suppose people have their favourite eras to cover with these things. So, when you are not actually in band mode what do you guys do for day jobs…?
CC: Well, I have got a studio and I write music for a living, I compose and arrange and stuff. I don’t do Lets Zep anymore.
TWR (to Piers): and you are still in ReGenesis…?
PDL: Not at the moment I am not in the current incarnation. Doug Is taking the helm at the moment. Doug was with them until 2001 and then I was with them from then until 2006 and then they did nothing for a couple of years and I will probably go back in eighteen months or so.
TWR: Do you do anything else musically then, Piers when you are not in G2...?
PDL: I play every now and then in a very amateur fun kind of party band that plays at each other’s birthdays and in that band I finally got to play Smoke On The Water! Other than that, nothing else at the moment.
TWR: What about the rest of you guys…?
DW: I am semi-retired and hoping not to go back to work. I hung up my working hat last September and as long as I can make my finances work I am not going to go back to work. I don’t do anything musically outside of G2.
JP: I work in the NHS.
TWR: I am sure that you have been asked this question before but I am going to ask it again anyway, what makes you want to go out and play music by this particular group…?
PDL: It is just really satisfying music to play. There’s probably a great deal of nostalgia as well but it is great music for musicians because it is so involved and complicated.
TD: Yeah, and it gives us something to moan about when we make mistakes! (laughs).
TWR: So, this is more or less a generalised show, have you got anything special planned for the future…?
PDL: There is a possible show coming up later on this year, in the summer or something doing a “historical “ show as in picking a particular show and recreating it. The preliminary discussions are going on now.
CC: We have to find out if it is technically possible to recreate it and how much that is going to cost.
And with that tantalising thought, we had to leave it for this time. My thanks once again to the band for giving up so much of their time and to their manager; Colin Davies for all his help and assistance.