Sssshhhhh! It’s Get Cape Wear Cape Fly!

Apart from hearing like Jack and Vera’s cheeky little son, Sam Duckworth aka Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly also manages to mix it across a million genres indie/emo/ folk/ electronic/ techno, dancy dance, with a touch of rave, the lot.

 A little birdie told me that at his last Manchester outing in January, he had a bit of an on stage strop and vowed never to return under his GCWCF guise ever again. So tonight I’m seeing Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly…. well that lasted all of 8 months, but it’s admirable that he’s come back, to the same venue, to give it another go.

MoHo Live is semi –full tonight and with Manchester’s summer kicking in about 2 months too late, it’s hot. Like proper hot…. I was last here to see Hundred Reasons in 2009, and I attended the opening night back in 2007, when it was all shiny and new (well half finished). I’m glad to see it has stood the test of time after a few management changes and what not. They’ve still got that frickin post though. I’m no building expert but surely in our age of email and 3D TV, they’ve invented things to support buildings instead of massive posts.

GCWCF’s first album, ‘Chronicles of a Bohemian Teenager’ stirs up some lovely little memories for me, of being footloose and fancy free at the tender age of 22. God, I’m getting old.  But as GCWCF will let me know tonight ‘You’re never too old to let the beat take hold….’

Joining him on stage is a fellow guitarist and drummer to offer a mixture of past choons and a smattering of new stuff from his latest 2010 release and most imaginatively named ‘Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly’ album.

Sam opens with a ska-infused ‘Collapsing Cities’, the brilliant first single release from GCWCF’s most current album. What a cracking way to open the night as Sam sings out “Everyone’s doing fine”. Positioned just left of the stage, I move myself to admire the brass section… there is no brass section…just a clever little backing track.

Taking it back to 2006, from debut album comes ‘An Oak Tree’, except it’s a pumped up lively version.  He’s a charismatic little thing, almost acting out each song, with every word accentuated with his crazy animated eyes movements.

Next, GCWCF jump back to the current album with ‘Nightlife’, an upbeat dancy number that reminds me of Scouting For Girls. Sorry, I had to say it. This may also be the only time in my life where I’ll hear Symantics and Gymnastic used creatively to make a rhyming lyric, bet Scouting for Girls couldn’t do that.

‘I-Spy’ next, sparks a massive sing-a-long peppered with little samples from the backing track. The lack of a full band and heavily used backing tracks makes this set almost like-for –like perfection compared with listening to the recorded songs, maybe slightly better. The drummer just looks genuinely chuffed with the crowd’s reaction to the song.

At the end of the song Sam add’s “You’re uncharacteristically noisey Manchester!”

I hasten to add that during his last Manchester gig Sam did get quite royally fucked off (and rightly so) at the audience who had forgot they had paid money to see him, and just had a massive conversation throughout the gig, hence the strop and the threats to end his musical career right there and then.

Dig over, Sam gets all topical about a recent story of some nobhead footballer nicking a donut and begins ‘Queen for a Day’, this is high energy with a likeable chorus, I even dance and I don’t do dancing me.

Referencing the abnormal “summer out of nowhere”, Sam lets his activist side out again and plays a brand new song “about tax dodging big brands, with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer”. This is a great big protest song about daylight robbery, full of guitar slapping and a heavy influence of Billy Bragg.

GCWCF’s sixth track is ‘Call Me Ishmael’ (the first line of Moby Dick y’know). It’s about breaking out of a rut, chasing your dreams and giving a big finger up to your 9 till 5’s.

“for none of us want to sit, in evaluations taking notes for hours…” – I feel myself coming over all emo and singing along to the lyrics as if he’s SINGING ABOUT MY LIFE MAAN.

The next track is dedicated to Manchester’s Kid British and is tinged with little brass bits. I would have loved to have seen a brass section to flesh this track out. This is swiftly followed by a heavy bass driven number that has a dash of soul thrown in.

Before his penultimate track Sam decides to clear the air and apologise for his behaviour last time round, he adds “I did not have the best time in Manchester last time, I was bit of a looney bastard”.

‘The Race Was Won’, proves Sam’s positioning as the prince of a good melodical tune, although this is not his strongest performance of the night. Maybe he’s knackered, I’d be too if I’d been throwing myself into it as much as Sam has tonight.

The last song, the title track of The Chronicles of a Bohemian Teenager, sounds musically accomplished as the crowd go mental for another, and final sing-a-long, “So get over here, let’s grab ourselves a beer…” there’s nothing quite like a drinking anthem.

And on that final note, and having to rush off because he’s about to start treading on the toes of the impending club night (who goes into a club when it first opens anyway eh?) Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly say a goodbye,

“Thanks for having us.”

Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly could have sank without trace, but Sam Duckworth brings a fresh energy to each and every song he performs, and these are great songs. So why is he not packing out a venue the size of MoHo?

Two ladies voice their frustration to me after the gig “I’ve paid sixteen quid and he didn’t even play War of The Worlds and didn’t play for long enough, we’ve worked out it’s about £2 a song.” No, it’s not. If you’re just basing it on GCWCP, Sam and the gang played 11 songs, so it’s about £1.45 per song. But then if you add the two other support bands into the equation, and let’s say they played about 7 songs each that’s about 64p per song. Bargain if you ask me. It’s like saying I paid £8 for this cinema ticket and Bruce Willis’s cameo appearance only lasted 1minute, and he didn’t even fire a gun. God I’ve paid nearly a tenner for 60seconds of Brucey. *shakes fist*

And another thing, if you are going to pay £16 to watch some bands, who’s bought the equipment, sold a kidney to finance a few gigs and have spent a fair while practising to get their sound just right to pleasure your ears to try and win you over in just 45min then (breathes), FFS have the decency and respect to listen to them and not jibber jabber all the way through it. You can whisper, just don’t have a full blown conversation about your next holiday and what the cat had for tea. No wonder this Duckworth’s got a bad impression of this lovely city.

Rant over.

Highly recommended, get over to Spotify or iTunes and treat yourself to all 3 albums, then go see him and bring friends. Just don’t talk.




Co-founder, Producer and Presenter of the weekly Silent Radio show. Part of the Silent family since 2010.Over 10 years experience of working with national, award-winning youth charities and in the creative industries. She’s the former Deputy Director of NOISEfestival.com, Europe’s leading promoter of emerging creative talent. Here she helped secure new creatives secure massive media exposure (BBC R1, 1Xtra…), showcases at mega impressive locations (Downing Street, V&A...) and kudos from the best in the business (Brian Eno, Boiler Room, Peter Saville…).She also flies the flag for women in the media as Director of Manchester’s independent music website Silent Radio and co-Founder, Exec Producer and Presenter of the Silent Radio show on MCR.Live; Further radio includes BBC 5Live, BBC Radio Manchester, plus the odd bit of TV Production Management with international broadcast credits (BBC, ZDF / Arte, Smithsonian…), she also dabbles with playing records to people and her first podcast is currently in pre-production.Bestest gigs: Pulp, Sheffield Arena, ’12 | Micah P Hinson, Sheffield Lantern Theatre, ’12 | Dream Themes, Manchester Star & Garter, ’14 | Patrick Watson, Manchester Gorilla, ’15 | Less Than Jake, Nottingham Rock City, ‘01 | Frightened Rabbit, Manchester Deaf Institute, ’12 | The Decemberists, Manchester Academy, ‘11 | Passion Pit, Manchester Academy 2, ‘09 | Iron and Wine, The Ritz, Manchester, ‘08 | The Verve (with Beck), Wigan Haigh Hall, ‘98 | Take That, Manchester Eastlands Stadium, ‘11 |Worst gig: Fall Out Boy, Manchester Roadhouse ’05 (subject to change)