Bombay Bicycle Club
The Bathhouse, London
added: 28 Apr 2010
// gig date: 26 Apr 2010
reviewer: Music-News.com Newsdesk
Sailor Jerry Presents,Bombay Bicycle Club at The Bathhouse.
Highlighting their strong affinity with live music, Sailor Jerry treated fans to an exclusive acoustic performance from NME award winners Bombay Bicycle Club.
The venue itself suited the theme of the evening perfectly. The hideaway coves, moody lighting and exotic decor created a boudoir ambience very much in line with the Sailor Jerry’s ethos and history, both of which we were continually reminded of throughout the evening. A film of Norman Collins, the father of old-school tattooing and the driving influence between the Caribbean rum’s distinctive imagery, was projected onto the walls as eager audiences were waiting for North London four-piece Bombay Bicycle Club to take to the stage.
As much as the venue was in-line with the theme, its layout did not particularly compliment the acoustic format of the evening, with many struggling to see and hear as soon as the band hit their first note. Those fortunate enough to get a decent place in the venue, however, were treated to engaging and intimate set from one of Britain’s most talked about young bands of recent years.
It can be so easy for acts to lazily perform their back catalogue in an acoustic setting without much thought, though this was never the case for Bombay Bicycle Club, who altered each song perfectly fit the stripped back style. Joined at times by lead guitarist Jamie MacColl’s father on the banjo, the band flirted with various styles throughout the course of the evening, highlighting the intricacies of each track.
Balancing favourites from their acclaimed debut 'I Had the Blues but I Shook Them Loose’ with new tracks, the band performed each song with passion and gusto, not disappointing the eager fans seated in front of them. The acoustic setting didn’t give much insight into the direction the band may take their sound in the follow-up album, but still demonstrated the emotion which front man Jack Steadman plies into each song with abundance. His shaky, distinctive vocal inflections carried through the intimate set, silencing many of the more impatient audience members towards the back of the room. The only true singalong moment came through their most recognisable track Always Like This as audiences chimed in to assist.
Bombay Bicycle Club aim to recapture the emotion and song writing subtleties on show at this intimate session with a forthcoming acoustic album. Though many of the songs feel a bit too fresh to evoke a true reason for a solely acoustic release, tonight’s performance showcased one of UK’s most promising and original indie rock ensembles.
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