Audio, 10 February 2010
Sometimes it is both a blessing and a curse that this fair city of ours has one of the most uniquely diverse music scenes in the entire U.K. Being spoilt for choice with so many great venues and bands has (on occasion) lead to some rather heated debates among friends as to where to head on a night out.
Only in Brighton could you saunter along the seafront and see a band as brilliant as British Sea Power in such an intimate setting as Audio, then casually stroll across town to catch the lads carry out a rare DJ set at one of the trendiest lounge bars in town. Perhaps this kind of intimacy is something the band reserve only for the lucky fans of their hometown. They are after all, known for being slightly aloof on the personal stakes. Not that this is at all reflected in their live performances, quite the opposite in fact.
British Sea Power (as their name so succinctly suggests) are a musical force to be reckoned with. Comprising of four full-time members, with the occasional cameo appearance from various instrumentalists both on-stage and in the recording studio, the local lads possess a truly enigmatic sound that’s difficult to pigeonhole. Having heard tales of their energetic and artful live performances in the past, it was no surprise that what was to be delivered this evening was bound to be a wee bit special.
The show is vastly dynamic, with crashing guitars, pulsating drums and emotive vocals, the skilful combination of which left many an audience member dumbstruck with awe. Sadly though, their seemingly boundless energy occasionally worked against them, with some of the lyrics being lost within the throng of flailing bodies on stage. Not that this seemed to bother the crowd much, as the squad of jumping teenagers at the front clearly proved.
Front man Yan looked instantly eye catching, His florescent Duct tape glowing in the ultra violet light making him look like he’d just stepped out of schoolboy production of Tron. Hamilton (Yan’s brother) had his time in the limelight too, assuming vocal duties for crowd favourite ‘No Lucifer’ amongst others.
There’s so much more to say about this band that unfortunately will impede my word count considerably. All that remains, having seen finally seen these Brighton prodigy’s with my own eyes, is that above all, they come across as genuine. Thankfully shunning the traditional song writing formulas, make the music they want to make and have a bloody good time doing it.
Words by James Watts
Photography by Noorali Hirani