Flamboyant Bella @ Bar Academy, 21/10/07

In time-honoured fashion I turned up too late to catch any of the support acts, but only barely. I got to the top of stairs to find myself dodging sweat-covered, panting kids making their way back from the stage. I couldn’t help feeling I’d missed something so I grabbed a drink and took in my surroundings. The place had been taken over with kids, some clearly pushing the 14+ age limit. What the heck was that about? Perhaps all the older people were at the main Academy next door for the NME tour and I’d wandered into an indie crèche or something. Still, there’s nothing like the enthusiasm of youth to knock a twenty-something’s cynicism, and Flamboyant Bella aren’t a band that have much truck with cynicism. If you’ve encountered them then there’s a good chance it’s been via their Myspace where, still unsigned, they’re racking up friends like nobody’s business. Or perhaps you’ve thrilled to the sounds of their two EPs with their perky, occasionally jangly, indie guitar-synth-pop happiness. Continue reading “Flamboyant Bella @ Bar Academy, 21/10/07”

David Ford @ The Glee Club, 9/10/07

Everyone that plays at the Glee Club comments on how quiet and polite everyone is. It’s not that all Brummies are naturally diffident, it’s that the staff seem to be pretty sharp on their ‘behaviour in the club policy’ which points out that customers aren’t spending a night down the pub and so shouldn’t act like they are. On the plus side it means you don’t get people yapping away during your favourite songs. On the down side you have to listen to support acts who would benefit from being drowned out by a more convivial atmosphere. Joseph Golden was a victim of this down side and, as I’m never that keen on giving people entirely negative reviews, that’s all I’ll say on the matter. Continue reading “David Ford @ The Glee Club, 9/10/07”

The Maccabees/Laura Marling @ Birmingham Academy, 7/10/07

I have to say I didn’t used to like The Maccabees. In fact I didn’t dislike them. I nothinged them. They were another one of the wearying stream of bands that have nothing but a tenuous USP to distinguish them – the one with their dad in, the ones that used to be banned everywhere cos their mates were a bit lairy, the Young Knives (um, do they even have a ‘thing’) and the ones that are from Leeds but aren’t the Kaiser Chiefs.You know what I mean? A constant flow of bands tumbling off the treadmill that are fine and maybe reasonably good but can anyone really get that excited about them? (As an aside – someone reading over my shoulder just mentioned the Kaisers’ vid for ‘Everything Is Average’. Tom Lehrer would have something good to say about that).

The point I’m slowly creeping up on? Well, to that list I’d have added The Maccabees – the ones who sing about a swimming pool. Continue reading “The Maccabees/Laura Marling @ Birmingham Academy, 7/10/07”