By Tom Belshaw

The term ‘intimate gig’ is usually reserved for some sort of flannel clad acoustic irony fest. It’s not something I would associate with an enormous venue like the o2 academy and it’s definitely not appropriate for describing angst ridden Minneapolis hip hop outfit, Doomtree.

And yet, the fact I’ve taken the time to mention all three of those elements in the same paragraph suggests there is indeed some sort of correlation between them.

My best friend had popped down from oop North and used ‘being overdue a visit’ as a rather lame excuse to have somewhere to sleep in between watching Doomtree and going back from whence he came.

In this particular instance the ‘Tree were the supporting act and after a little research on YouTube both Rob and I had realised very quickly we would not be sticking around for the main event, partly because of the video said artist had done with Kid Rock but mostly because he was crap.

With everyone snugly squeezed into the upstairs bar, huddled around a small stage in the corner, I got to thinking about how I’d misjudged Doomtree’s popularity. The only people I knew who were aware of them were the three people I’d played unofficial frontman, POS’s, latest album to and of those three one was standing next to me demanding Jaeger.

This was an impressive turnout. People were chatting frantically. One person even threw up! I quickly realised that person was an idiot.

Unfortunately this rabble were not here to see ‘The Doom’. They were here to fund the main act’s next misguided duet with Kid Rock.

Despite only 5 people cheering at the question “How many of y’all know Doomtree?” the energy was stupendous. Every one of the five speaking members gave their absolute all and had us all throwing our “hands opposite to the ground” and screaming out their moniker on cue.

After 45 minutes the question “How many of y’all know Doomtree NOW?” was met with a resounding woop and the frantic chat began again.

As if the gig wasn’t trouser-starchingly good enough, the opportunity to meet the group post-performance was the glacé cherry that crowned the Bakewell.

The chance for Rob to have photographic evidence of the time he touched Dessa, the only female member of the group and the biggest crush he’s ever had, was met with incoherent cooing and reaffirmed my position of BFF, trouncing the efforts of that ‘Liam’ guy he’s been hanging around with recently.

Hugs and handshakes are about as intimate as it gets and they were doled out in abundance. Any more than that and we’d be experiencing a part of Rob’s mind I never wanted to see externalised.