Just down the Worting Road from the kebab van, lies The Royal Oak, a local pub whose diminutive parking space is more than compensated for by its proud possession of two darts boards, and a pool table.
Tonight, however, within the alcove normally reserved for the quiet chink and cur-thud of Newtonian billiards, two young rock bands, Triad and Exit Strategy, will instead take their cues, and shake the rafters with a succession of belting tracks.
Despite the incontrovertible numerical implications of their name, Triad are in fact something of a quintet. They proceed to hammer through a series of excellent, self-written tracks, their lead singer having something of the Chrissie Hynde about her. The drummer is also clearly a master of his craft, and to this end has stripped to the waist. Perhaps inadvertently, this gives him the appearance of playing the drums from his bathtub.
There is something inexplicable and eldritch about the sound produced by a coordinated cluster of electric guitars. The sophistication and variation of the musical output seems somehow disproportionate to the simple digital input. It is as if each guitar is really a cage for some trapped spirit from another world, whose anger and longing for its own plane of existence, can nevertheless be trained and channelled by its Earthly guardian into a sound both ethereal and visceral.
Before Exit Strategy go on, I explain to their enigmatic rhythm guitarist, Dan, my difficulties believing in a naturalistic explanation for the sound of the electric guitar. I question how he can be capable of eliciting such sonic sophistication, to which he merely retorts, "I can't believe how you can understand Bayesian stats."
Exit Strategy's drummer, Aaron, is rather more demure that his Triad counterpart, and rather than disrobing, merely changes into his drumming tank-top. And then they're off. Peering over the top of the various friends and girl-friends, one can descry lead singer Andy, sporting a post-modern ironic combination of DangerMouse T-shirt, and nu-metal baggy shorts, a la Fred Durst. As the guitarists work their filigree magic, Andy does a funny little angry dance, and turns to commune with Aaron, who is clearly deep in the percussive zone.
Exit Strategy compose their own music, and even have a demo EP, Red Light Syndrome. It's all very impressive stuff, and one can only feel sorry for the man in the kebab van, wreathed as he is in greasy aromatic tendrils, and now musically deprived to boot.