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Chas & Dave, The Maze

October 23 2008

BILLED as a kind of farewell for Mr Hodges and Mr Peacock (for club gigs, anyway) meant that some had paid £36 for a seat. The rest – standing – half that. No one was complaining though as The Maze became The Queen Vic at party time for just over an hour last night. Pork pie hats, the lot.
The usual – Rabbit, Gertcha, The Sideboard Song, London Girls, Margate, Banging In Your Head – were exchanged with a mixture of more of the same but lesser-known and inventive "ioanna" courtesy of the trio's (Mick is still behind the kit) auteur Chas Hodges. Now I see what he meant about Jerry Lee Lewis, who he toured with in the 60s, being a big inspiration. It's rock'n'roll piano most of the time.
A nifty instrumental billed as "rock funk classical" was followed by Snooker Loopy and you could tell which Hodges preferred, despite the beery yawping reaction to the latter. And while the dual vocal magic of Rabbit is their best-known hit, it was Ain't No Pleasing You, a perfect four-minute pop song, that prompted the biggest singalong of the night. A fitting end to a rather silly evening.
Next time round Chas will be playing with his own band. Dave Peacock, who looked a tad wearied by it all (he only livened up when he broke a string), will only turn out for the occasional theatre gig or festival appearance.

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