Saya was in the UK for a short stint to work on the mix for the Pastels/Tenniscoats LP 'Two Sunsets' - travelling to Glasgow from Japan via London. I'd heard word of a new venue opening up in town with the Japanese name and got in touch to see if they'd be interested in having Saya play. Turned out they'd be (fingers crossed) open just in time, and as big fans of Tenniscoats would love to have play the venue's first show.
The paint was still fresh on the walls. There was no proper mixing desk (I brought my own and got a bit heavy-handed with the echo). The PA was far from the best and the sound meter that they'd had to install wasn't set up right. It tripped not once, but twice during 'Baibaba Bimba' (you'll hear the silence as the power cuts out on the recording) - leaving Saya to switch from keyboard to guitar to finish it off.
Despite all that it was a magical early sunday evening. Saya was nervous playing her first solo show outside Japan, but the attentive crowd of 70 odd stuck with her and sat in rapt attention. No one show is going to capture the essence of cafe OTO, but if they say you should start as you mean to go on and that's what happened here. It's nice to finally be able to share this little slice of the venue's history. Enjoy.
- John Chantler