Friday, 23 April 2010

Brigade - Camden Barfly (22/04/10)

I figure seeing as I am going to see a fair few bands, I would try my hands at some reviews. Luckily I went to see Brigade last night, so I can get straight to work. So, here it goes:

"Camden is a vibrant little section of London, full of market stalls and mohawks. Not a metre goes by without you being handed a leaflet guiding you to the nearest tattoo parlour, or alternative music night. It is also an area that thrives on music, every market stall, bar or food vendor is playing a mixture of rock/pop/R'n'B/ethnic music. This is a place that lives and breathes music. What would you expect from a v"village" that has one of the most recognised music venues in London sitting in the middle of it. The Barfly. This was the venue for the second date of the comeback tour on which Will Simpson and his band of merry men were embarking.

Before we got to the main event, however, we must obviously go through the support acts that are trying to curry favour with the crowd, the first of which are a rather insane trio of Welshmen named "Exit International" who try to muster up some energy in the room. Whilst they are energetic, humorous and just a little bit crazy, the room remains a tad dead. But, I don't care about general consensus, I rather liked them, two bassists and not a guitar in sight and enough heavy sounds to make the room shake. A good opening, I thought, to a night that was always going to be a little bit heavy.

Next to grace the stage are "The Telegraphs", whilst Exit International would only be supporting Brigade on two of the legs of the tour (Cardiff the night before, and here), this energetic five piece would be supporting them for the entire tour, and it is easy to see why Brigade picked them. Their brand of "epic" and "anthemic " rock may not be worth of sell out stadium tours in the future, but it is certainly enough to invoke a bigger reaction from the dwindling crowd. The female singer (Hattie Williams, no comparisons please) may have been a bit off key to begin with but by the end of the set she seemed more calm and assured of her position. There is no doubt of the male vocalists (Darcy Harrison) talents, as he belted out tune after tune with a confident sense of achievement. This is a band that qualify for some mainstream success and are fully deserving of your attention.

The room is full now, as Brigade take the stage in the room they played their last show in before their 18 month sabbatical, the crowd cheer and Will Simpson greets the crowd. The music begins. The fans, including myself go crazy, the buzzing starts. The music stops, Will sheepishly asks "what the fuck is going on". The problem is fixed and the music resumes. Brigade pummel out a confidently huge and impressive set list that includes their most notable tracks "Meet Me At My Funeral", "ADjust", "Queenie" et al. They make it seem like they haven't been away at all, except of course for the addition of two new tracks that we can look forward to from the EP. It is a supremely impressive show from the home town boys, and one which they can be very proud of. Will's family were in attendance, shown by the addition of Ed Simpson for the encore and "Four Kids To A Glockenspiel" which the crowd react to with appreciation, and a sneaky Charlie Simpson, anxious not to get mobbed as he makes his way backstage after the show. By the time the last notes of the last song ring out you feel as if you have just been hit by a bus. Brigade are an amazing band, and one that deserves to be bigger than they are, They are a bunch of nice, down to earth and, above all, exceptionally talented musicians. I for one have missed them immensely and I am extremely glad they are back."

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