my Un-Peeled started in style with cult Welsh outfit Datblygu. And although Rico told me and fellow late arrivals Spread Eagle – while affixing wristbands – that David R Edwards and Patricia Morgan were still sound-checking, that rather seamlessly morphed into the set. And ‘what a performance’, as Bob would say.
David and Patricia proved highly personable and charming between numbers and eminently entertaining throughout, the lure of the Welsh language in the songs adding to it all. And whether tackling a secular hymn about Cardiganshire or songs about politics; sex, pubs and taxis; Mental Health Act or unemployment issues; there was plenty of empathy out there for the music and sentiments.
Various obstacles over the years have ruled out any Datblygu appearances outside the principality for more than 20 years, and this was only their third performance during that period. So what an honour to be there. Yet the promise of their debut single led to five Peel sessions between 1987 and 1993, the start of his love affair with Welsh language post-punk, in turn influencing the likes of Super Furry Animals.
On first sight, you’d have been forgiven for thinking David didn’t want to be there, but this was a man with so much to share, and the Conti crowd truly warmed to him. At times there was genuine comedy, a string of electronic mishaps keeping Patricia on her toes – from unexpected dry ice to volume surges, adding almost Frank Sidebottom and Ted Chippington-like elements. Top entertainment.
Datblygu’s Patricia and David on the events stage at the Conti, Un-Peeled 2016 (Photo: Simon Williams)