LIVE REVIEW. Shura at The Forum

Date: 7 December 2016

Venue: The Forum, Kentish Town

Words: Victoria Ling

Photography: Victoria Ling

Dressed in layers and entering the stage for the penultimate date of the ‘Shura-pean’ tour, The Forum went into darkness as Shura took to the stage with her band (Luke – guitars, Ally – drums and Rory – bass) and kicked off the night with ‘Nothing’s Real’ to roars from the sold-out crowd. Who could have guessed that the main girl of the night was full of Shu-flu as Shura worked her way from behind the keys to the front of the stage and back again. As she gulped from a pint glass, the crowd were told that she is actually downing a hot toddie to kick her flu which also may have helped with her energy; however Shura is not a woman lacking in energy, they seem to be

getting better as the crowds grow bigger. The drive in this band is simply mind-blowing. ‘Kids N’Stuff’ kicks in with goose bumps inducing effect, any long-term fan of Shura knows that something special is going to happen at this point – the transition. Everybody was waiting for that transition and as soon as ‘Indecision’ starts, the crowd simultaneously loose control as The Forum’s atmosphere is stepped up a notch. Indeed, there was passionate crowd interaction a plenty tonight, especially during Shura’s confession that she is admittedly quite shy which she says is ironic to the career she has now. Thankfully Shura remains standing with strength and grace doing what she does best, and in quite a lump-in-throat moment we are given ‘2Shy’ going into ‘Make It Up’. “So I just released an album and every song I performed is from that album but this next one is not from that album,” is what Shura tells us. Excitement brews and I hear someone say ‘Just Once’ but it is not to be, instead a new track is presented, and ’Sacrifice’ is great testament to how Shura’s sound is still progressing. The sound is fresh and distinct, but still contains familiar elements, this is why Shura gains more recognition by the day in this ever changing cut-throat music industry.

If the night could not get any more emotional, a dedication goes out to the fans in the form of ‘Touch’, the first song written for the debut album. Whoops come from the crowd as Shura climbs into the pit to grace those who were lucky enough to get to the front barrier with her presence. It is such an exhilarating moment that it even stirs a few happy tears from the crowd as she disappears but thankfully not for too long as the encore comes with ‘White Light’ which is quite possibly Shura’s most electric track performed live. Strobes galore shine down with Shura bashing out the sample pad and sending the crowd crazy in awe that even she falls to the floor before catching a breathe to take us to the end of this ‘tidal wave of feelings’ of the Shura-pean tour to a sea of confetti.


Check out Shura on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

 

Through the eyes of Lil Vik

CAMDEN ROCKS FEST REVIEW – The Cribs

Date: 4th June 2016 (Camden Rocks Festival)

Venue: The Electric Ballroom, Camden.

Genre: Indie/Garage-rock

Rating: ★★★★

 

So after a long day, of varying bands and tightly-packed venues, it was finally time for the naughties indie-rock legends to grace The Electric Ballroom and headline Camden rocks. Everyone was there to see it: committed fans, the convinced-at-the-last-minute and other bands who had played gigs today. Apprehension grew fast and relentless chants of “Wakefield” were getting louder and louder – but they were eventually met with a delivery of the good stuff. As the infamous Yorkshire Jarman brothers walk onto the stage and nonchalantly start playing their guitars, there is (as predicted) instant moshing, of the drunken, rowdy kind. 

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It’s only when seeing twins Gary and Ryan Jarman strum out their aging hits and scream down the mics, that you realise something about bands like The Cribs. They are a lucky by-product of musical crowd mentality. Their indie tales of shitty towns, young love and apethy are far from unique, bands had been doing it long before them (the likes of The Strokes and The Libertines to name a few) and bands were doing a remarkabley similar act since them (almost every up-and-coming indie-rock artist), and yet with their relatable image and knack for getting people riled up, they have transformed, and maintained their status of being one of the biggest cult bands in the UK. This is not to take anything away from The Cribs as an act, as you could not deny the incredible atmosphere that was instantly achieved at the Elecrtic Ballroom tonight, the crowd was a blurring swarm of chanting, shoving and jumping – the perfect rowdy mess that you would hope for at a gig like this. It is something that can only be achieved with a level of authenticity from bands such as The Cribs, however it is clear when watching them from a certain perspective that they are not doing anything overly different from the myriad of bands that showcased their talent and hunger across Camden Rocks today – and yet it is just working for them.

Notorious hits such as ‘Mirror Kisses‘ and ‘Men’s Needs‘ created a adoring crowd reaction unmatched by other attempts. People were simply manic, in the best possible way and this is what tonight was all about at Camden Rocks. The Cribs’s moment in the limelight represented everything that the bands who played today (regardless of genre) want to get to, and the kind of endless, and seemingly effortless success that The Cribs aren’t going to get sick of any time soon. This ‘you-had-to-be-there’ sort of cult atmosphere tonight just proves how important band identity and following is, to the point that it often surpasses the importance of the music quality (especially with indie music).

 

 

The Cribs’s are on twitter and facebook, check ’em out.

 

(All images: Steph Baker)

 

 

Baker out.

 

CAMDEN ROCKS FEST REVIEW – Tellison

Date: 4th June 2016 (Camden Rocks Festival)

Venue: The Forge, Camden.

Genre: Sad indie-rock

Rating:★★★★

Indie-rock favourites, Tellison have been relatively quiet since the release of ‘Hope Fading Nightly‘ (2015), so it was good to see them do their thing again and play this great festival, this sentiment was also be shared by obvious fans who almosted filled The Forge for the London lads tonight.

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The band started their set with ‘Helix and Ferman‘, with the audience echoing the chants of “Drink red wine, say you’re fine” along side Peter Phillips (guitarist) and Andrew Tickell (bass) while our front man sung troubled tales of struggle in love, the set started as it meant to go on. Tonight showcased the greatest, almost tangible connections that can be made between a great band and it’s endowed audience. I’m not sure whether this was more due to Stephen Davidson’s emotional, matter-of-fact voice or the genuinely humble audience interactions that frequented the time inbetween songs (“Look you’re here watching us while all the famoud bands play down the road, so thank you”) – but despite having some time-wasting technical difficulties, and a venue that did not entirely suit the band, Tellison managed to touch a lot of people tonight.

Tunes such as ‘Boy‘ and ‘Tact Is Dead‘ were strung out full of detailed guitar riffs and energetic drums, demonstrating how timeless, ageless and seamless Tellison‘s troubled indie-rock music really is. They even experiemented at times throughout the set, with some songs incorporating warm, delicate harmonies, and others having some heavier guitar lines and more relentless drums by Henry Danowski, these were met with positive crowd reactions. This is a personal band, who sing personally significant lyrics and enjoy playing intimate sets (regardless of the size of the venue room), and as the words and beats are seemingly pouring out of the musicians, the crowd stand in wonder and bliss.

 

 


What the crowd thought…

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“A fantastic, unique band that have invigorated my evening!”

 

Listen to Tellison’s tunes below:

You can also follow them on facebook and twitter

 

(All images: Steph Baker)

 

Baker out.

CAMDEN ROCKS FEST REVIEW. Fizzy Blood

Date: 4th june 2016 (Camden Rocks Festival)

Venue: Hawley Arms, Camden. 

Genre: Heavy Rock

Rating:★★★★1/2

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This five piece from Leeds, consisting of mates Paul, Benji, Jake, Ciaran and Tim are a powerhouse of hardcore rock’n’ roll – and that is something that becomes apparent from the first chord struck.

The boys came out with ringing heavy riffs, instantly blaring through the the room while front man, Benji screamed through the mic. All of the niche defining talent irrupting from the musicians resulted in manic screams and a scramble for space to move on the small Hawley Arms stage. You could hear the bass player’s crazed scream into the crowd despite not having a mic in front of him. Meanwhile, front man Benji kept his cool and strong stance throughout. It’s a wonder how this cool image is maintained whilst blaring out seemingly effortless hardcore vocals.

Patience’ and ‘Up and Down’ were clearly the highlights of the set, and we even got to experience ‘ADHD’ a track never before played live. The emotive lyrics, upbeat bass lines and playful drums lured the crowd in before they exploded into a frenzy of hardcore guitar solos and head banging.

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The reason this band are going to do so well in their career is their live performances. Fizzy Blood were undoubtedly the highlight of Camden Rocks -a relentless explosion of fuzzy rock ‘n’ roll that shook up London.

 

What the crowd thought…

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“That was fucking intense”

 

Give Fizzy Blood‘s ear shattering tunes below:

You can also connect with Fizzy Blood on facebook and twitter

 

(All images: Steph Baker)

 

Baker out.