Baxter Dury 04 Jan 2012 21:00 Zappa club, Tel Aviv

Zappa club
Raul Wallenberg 24 Zappa club, Tel Aviv
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You could, if you were so inclined, infer a lot from Baxter Dury's first words as he takes to the stage. "Awlright?" he says. "I'm me. And I always was."
It turns out to be merely the opening salvo in his increasingly odd between-song banter – "calm up everyone, leave it in, leave it in," he offers later – but equally, opening his gig with an assertion of his individuality seems telling.

Kids of legendary rock stars who go into the family business have it tough, and even more so when their careers seem entwined, as is the case with Dury and his late father, Ian. He came to public notice on the cover of his father's 1977 album New Boots and Panties!!; his first major live appearance was performing a track from that album, My Old Man, at the gig that followed his father's funeral; his debut album of eerie psychedelia, Len Parrot's Memorial Lift, was overshadowed by the release the same year of the biopic Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll, which viewed his dad's career largely through his eyes.

There's no getting around the fact that Baxter Dury occasionally resembles his father, both in his mannerisms and his tendency to draw sharp portraits of oddball London characters via spoken-word narratives. Equally, it's obvious he has his own niche. His recent album Happy Soup ditched the weirdness of its two predecessors in favour of more straightforward indie: Isabel sounds not unlike a stripped-back version of Blur's Girls and Boys. On one level, that's a shame – there's something compelling about Cocaine Man's dark pulse and the hazy Lucifer's Grain – but even with music built on standard foundations, there's a pleasing idiosyncrasy about his lyrics and melodies.

You're left feeling that Dury should be more famous in his own right than he is. Perhaps he thinks so, too: his on stage demeanour is so deadpan it's hard to work out if it's an act or if he really is a bit underwhelmed by the circumstances he finds himself in. At the end of the show, the band stay on stage. They're going to play their encore now, says Dury dolefully: the dressing room's too small to bother returning to.
About Baxter Dury
Baxter Dury (born 18 December 1971), son of the late Ian Dury, is an indie-rock singer-songwriter. In the summer of 2001 Baxter Dury released his debut single, the "Oscar Brown EP". The single picked up rave reviews, which included 'Single of the Week' in NME. It also achieved 'Single of the Week' in the Guardian. User-contributed text is available ...

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