Posts tagged Dance
3rd November 2011
For a band of The Raptures influence, widespread appeal and substantial fan base it was with confusion that we arrive in Camden tonight. For we were not headed to The Roundhouse, neither The Electric Ballroom. Instead we’re greeted with the words ‘Sold Out’ plastered over the foyer of KoKo as we sought refuge from the harshly precipitous London Skies. This venue seems to get smaller with every visit and tonight was no different, stocked to the guilds with disco Derek’s and indie Irene’s. As it turns out the venue and the supply of reasonably priced (& chilled) beer were not the only things in short supply tonight.
The non publishing of their ‘Special Guests’ certainly got the crowds in early with the possibility of a one off unmissable performance. Not until you are over the threshold and beyond the ‘No Re-Entry’ signs is the secret revealed. The special name emblazoned on the lineup posters read…’Citizens’. Who? Clearly this was a shameless attempt by KoKo to get the punters in. As much as I like to bait the HMV Forum, at least they always display the set times outside. plus their beer is somehow cheaper and not poured haphazardly from lukewarm cans.
After hearing Citizens soft high pitched vocalist from the bar I was surprised to find a bloke camouflaged as 80’s retro wallpaper. His homeogenous vocals fit their simple but uncannily catchy electro melodies and energised indie pop. Youthful and fresh, these guys music was mature way beyond their juvenile years. Combining uplifting melodies and repeatum clean guitar riffs they put in a solid performance.
From the get go, The Rapture‘s effortlessly cool vibes washed over the gently swaying crowds. Their sharpened clattering post punk guitar riffs combined with the kind of drumlines which tap subliminally into your feet, forcing them to dance dance dance!
New material was well received, it’s poppy angles and hook heavy vocal harmonies sending rolling waves of laid back coolness. The age old indie weapon, ‘the cow bell’ was particularly effective tonight at getting us all to strut our funky stuff.
It was the older classics which packed the most clout with The Gang if Four styled Echoes, party starter Whoo! Alright – Yeah…Uh Huh and the House of Jealous Lovers that gave birth to the cool indie dance-punk machine.
It was soon after these got their plays that The Rapture retired for a ‘well earned’ break. A 45 minute set…ok, that’s cool because that irritating poster said its a 2 hour performance. One song later and the sound of dismayed punters was clearly audible over the PA as the lights went up and we got booted out! Now I’ve been to quite a few of these shindigs before and I know 51 minutes for a headline set is pretty damn short! With a stunned feeling of injustice burning deep inside we headed for home.
The Rapture despite their shortened efforts formed a fantastic pocket of cool disco inflected indie in Camden tonight.
3rd October 2011
There is a good reason why clubs are empty on Mondays, and that’s because they fall on a Monday. Tonight we’re in for an 80’s inspired retro night of disco-beats and danceable rock in the sparsely populated Relentless Garage.
The brave few who decided to turn up early for the support band (us included) were not rewarded with a great upcoming talent. Instead we had a Norwegian Duo with two names, two set times and two instruments (Guitar and MacBook Pro). It was tough to tell the difference between their 2 bands Syntax TerrOrkester and Baetur because they were both totally devoid of merit, end of. A very slow start!
Thankfully the London based dark pop band Scanners were here to liven the drab scene. Deep and melodic indie rock guitars suited the vocals of Sarah Daly who howled and yelped her way though a lively and emotionally wrought set. Mixing up twinkling chimes and chasm-like guitar reverb they struck an overcast sound that could pull both the heart strings and the ‘let her rip’-cords. Packing in plenty of cool tunes such as the sweet Baby Blue, darkly acoustic Salvation and the firecracker set closer Raw these guys turned round the nights fortunes.
Soon the crowd swelled with red tracksuit’s in anticipation of the headline act, who burst on to stage in their own matching set. Datarock, looking like 80’s fools they kicked into their unique tongue in cheek disco mayhem. Yet something wasn’t right. Whether it was the sparse crowd, the over the top calls to go crazy (on a monday!), the sound balance (low guitars and non-existent bass) or just poor performance, the set was not going well for these norse dance vikings. Yet in one divine moment of inspiration it all changed…
“Everybody come in close (we know its a Monday) but please we have a 360 camera and were gonna film the video for our new song California”
I an instant the vibe changed from social club toe tapping to hedonistic clubbing heaven. Following up this with the introduction of Happy Mondays Dancer Bez and Guitarist Kav, guesting on a hypersonic and massively extended version of Fa-Fa-Fa, this was the shot in the arm this show needed. From here they never looked back, adding more and more urgency with their relentless party tunes including I Used To Dance With My Daddy and their biggest hit Computer Camp Love.
Returning from a short set break, I witnessed what I can only accept as a dream. Their drummer led a karaoke version of the cheesiest song that has ever…or will ever exist, I’ve Had The Time Of My Life! It was complete with band members jumping into the crowd to lead the tune and they even managed to throw in the Sax solo to boot. But like I said. I never saw it. It didn’t happen. I didn’t embrace the cheese. I most definitely did not sing along ;)
Nevertheless, crime to music everywhere ignored, this was a thoroughly enjoyable set from a fun time band who never take themselves too seriously (if that wasn’t obvious enough already!).