I missed seeing Paperscissors perform recently with The Checks, a slip up on my part that, having now seen them play, I regret. For Paperscissors rock (I couldn’t resist…), and they do it well. But before we could see Paperscissors there was the matter of their “special guests”, who turned out to be a singular “guest”.
It takes a brave man to perform his own original material solo in front of a half-full, half-drunk, crowd who are really there for one reason only – to see Paperscissors and dance their asses off. But Sven Adam put in a strong effort and managed to get people moving with his acoustic tunes, belted out with real feeling. His cover of Stevie Wonders’ Higher Ground was superb and showed his voice and arrangement off well. Perhaps not the best setting for his music, he persevered and did himself proud.
As soon as Paperscissors took the stage it was obvious who people were there to see. As Chris Jamieson thumped out a few beats on the bass drum the reverberations drew the punters in like moths to a flame. Suddenly a scattering of people turned into an almost full dance floor and soon the crowd was moving energetically as this new duo belted out track after track of funky blues rock, in the same vein as the Black Keys or White Stripes. A lull as a slower new song was performed halfway through the set allowed the crowd to take a breather and gather their wits before the pace picked up again.
Performing several high profile gigs, including with John Spencer Blues Explosion, The Checks and Helmet, in the 7 months they’ve been together has obviously pushed them to perform at their best in a very short space of time – this is a polished act, with great stage presence together and they feed of each other’s energy well.
Despite some technical difficulties, including having a drunken fan upend a monitor while clambering around on stage, Paperscissors soldiered on, even returning for two encores at the demand of a room full of happy fans.
The only suggestion I’d have for the band is that, with comparisons so readily drawn with the Black Keys, closing with a Black Keys cover is going to emphasise those comparisons and perhaps serve as a hindrance in the development of their own unique sound. At the same time, it was a great song to cover and they did a fantastic job of it, but their own sound is strong enough to not need to resort to covers.
Paperscissors are a two-piece Blues-Rock duo from Wellington. They consist of Chris Jamieson on Drums, and Seamus Johnson on Guitar and Vocals. They take a lot of inspiration from such acts as The Black Keys, The White Stripes, and The Raconteurs, but with their our own flair. they formed in January on the back of previous successful bands and so far have been busy with recording and gigs throughout the city. They have been fortunate enough to open for bands as The John Spencer Blues Explosion, The Checks, Kids 0f 88, Computers want me dead and Helmet, plus their our own shows which have been very successful. Their first single “Sirens” has been successful and a real crowd pleaser, it has featured on local radio stations and has been listened to quite extensively around the world on the website soundcloud.com. They are also fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to record in the Red Bull studios up in Auckland, which will be happening in the coming months. They have a lot planned coming up including more gigs, recording our second single and EP and a possible tour in the midst.