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iko in los angeles
The City Of Angels. Makes sense when you visit it. Not only for the Angels that grace the bars, cafes and sidewalks of America's most funky city, but also the ones that reach out an arm and stop you from being hit by a car thats jumped a red light. I took great pleasure in looking out over Sunset Boulevard where we were staying with a friend, strumming a rendition of 'Under The Bridge' to myself. Just like New York you find yourself living in familiarity. Recognising the signs above your head before you've seen them. A strange sense of a cultural coming home for two guys who've grown up on a diet of Michael Mann movies, Grand Theft Auto and Ryan Adams.

We landed some time in the late afternoon of Monday 16th September. Met at LAX by our long term agent Steve. Whilst the label had been out earlier this year, Neil and I had never met Steve, despite our relationship with him dating back quite a few years. Driven from the airport to a mexican bar in the warm orange glow of the LA sunset, we were like giddy tourists. Check out the size of the freeway, I said internally, as not to embarrass myself. Plenty of time for that. Crossing the road on the way to dinner we had the aforementioned brush with death. A jeep of some description racing at 50/60mph into the corner as he jumped the red light, came within inches of killing us all.

We survived. Noted it would have been hugely ironic to die before we played a single song, but likewise acknowledged the benefits of going down in that kind of legendary manner. City of guardian Angels then.

After a very friendly introduction to Mexico's finest tequila by the barman Alfredo, we headed to our apartment and settled into the nighttime bustle that is Sunset - the, er, road that never sleeps?

We had several days before The Hotel Cafe show with which to take in the sounds and sights with Steve, as well as meet some Hollywood movers and shakers. I hate that phrase cause they were neither moving or shaking really but mainly bringing their dog and being super nice. So we saw Mulholland Drive, The Hollywood Sign, something of Venice. Early on finding ourselves a little gem in the rough that was The Sprouted Garden Cafe that had a fire pit in the centre of it, perfect for late night chats in the glow of the flames.

So the day of the show arrived. We had some rehearsal time. Was exciting to see the guest list with so many names on it that we were looking forward to meeting. A handful of them at least were responsible for us being there in the first place, and that, cannot be underestimated. Those myspace chats when things were not easy, some phone calls, late night emails of encouragement. These people were already Team Iko before we even named them as such. One celebratory shot with them was a moment to photograph. A cheers to perseverance. The evening had already seen some of the best singer-songwriters and bands in LA so it was slightly intimidating to bring our brand of Devon uplifting melancholia to the stage. Settling in though it felt good to be finally there, looking out into stage lights, recognising the silhouettes.

The rest of our days in LA were padded out with some more great company, visits to the Getty Museum and sushi in Venice, again. Cruising down Hollywood Boulevard with Lionel Ritchie blaring from the speakers was something of a highlight. It's a difficult place to leave. I mentioned at the gig that my desire was to drag it close to my doorstep so I could walk out first thing in the morning and onto Sunset. We've made many friends there and of course, the fact that US TV and film has given us so many opportunities we otherwise wouldn't have, it really has felt like something of a pilgrimage. One we hope to make as often as we can.

Goodnight Hollywood Boulevard. Goodnight, see you soon.

Indeed.
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find a place - single
 
released 16 march 2015
track listing:
1. find a place
 
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