Touring, recording and building a fan base - Black Water County are paying their dues and it shows
Mr Kyps is a place of local legend and it was with a certain sense of closure that my final group at this iconic Poole venue was a band very much of the future.
The evening starts off with that rare thing at a live local gig - a queue at the door that augurs well for a good turnout.
Maybe the reason is that sense of nostalgia as Kyps shuts its door this month for the final time, or maybe it's a sign of the growing fanbase that turns out when BWC play.
Beer in hand and standing in a filling venue it's Gary Scagell who is first up. It's a tough set for just a guitar and cajun when people are busy queuing at the bar but Gary does well in the opening stint.
A shortish break allows us to refresh our libations and service takes longer as there's been a steady stream of punters coming in to see the support, Trav Cats.
Now these local stalwarts have been around for a while and I know I've seen and enjoyed them before but can't remember where. No matter, as they grip the evening firmly by the neck I'm left to enjoy their particular brand of what passes for music.
It's difficult to describe the mix of bluegrass, rock, country, Americana and folk that they thrash, blow and bang their way through but without a doubt they are enjoying it and this is an important feature of the night.
A good choice for a support band the Trav Cats get a well deserved rousing reception from the crowd and I for one felt the richer for having experienced the phenomena.
In these days of instant stardom via the sausage machine that is the x-factor/BGT/reality TV, it's great to see a young band that is prepared to work hard and put in the miles to learn their craft.
Despite the whacky stage persona Black Water County have always had a sensible head on, and the hard work and hours on the motorway are starting to pay off.
Seeing the band for the first time in what feels like forever but is actually probably a month reminds me just what a force of nature they are and by the time they get on stage the venue is packed.
It's been a funny old music year so far and finding myself photographing a really successful local gig, with a local band and a truly appreciative crowd reminds me why I do it. Not least being tapped on the shoulder by musicians, chatting with Percy and being goosed by a cheeky drummer just makes it harder to break away from the Dorset music scene.
Anyway back to the music and BWC crack on into a set list that is a reminder of how much they have developed and their own highly original music is good enough to take over a venue and keep people dancing. So good in fact that it is difficult to pick the best of a great bunch.
One more beer and Brandy are particular favourites and it is interesting that a band that used to sound so much like a mashup of Flogging Molly, Levellers and Dropkick Murphy's have found their own sound and the original music that at one time used to take a backseat to folkpunk standards now sits right up front on its own merits.
What a wonderful way to say goodbye to Kyps for my last ever visit. BWC, to use x-factor parlance 'owned the stage' and proved why they are making waves in the scene.
The band have a massively busy season coming up that will without doubt garner them plenty more fans and some exciting festival appearances booked.
If they are able to add this to a productive winter in the studio then the sky really is the limit.