Monday, February 19, 2007

Scarf Ace

Blood Red Shoes/Vena Carva/The Black Flash/Kid Captain, Little Civic, Wolverhampton, Tuesday February 13 2007.

The last time we came across Kid Captain they were quietly impressing in support of Archie Bronson Outfit and Comanechi last April, and we expected them to being doing better things by now than propping up a four-band show at The Little Civic like this. Their winning blend of fraggle and shoegazing (imagine Mega City 4 metamorphosing into a sonic cathedral and you kinda get the picture) gets things off to a bright and engaging start although that one killer tune still presently eludes them.

First impressions on The Black Flash are that they're out of their depth in this sorta company. But whether it's just a case of nerves or poor choice of opening material, they make an unusually mercurial recovery and by the end of the set we're scouring for superlatives rather than readying for a panning. New single 'We Love Tokyo' is out on Wanderlust Records on April 2 and can be streamed from their myspace.

At this point spot a very pretty brunette with porcelain skin, well wrapped up with a scarf wandering around furtively in front of your correspondent. The things people will do to get a crowdwatch mention on PV. Harrumph.

Stop short of remonstrating with the young lady in question for hustling my column inches, as Vena Carva clamber on stage, having seemingly brought with them the entire occupants of their sixth form common room. The slightly gauche private party feel (complete with one of the politest and most self-conscious stage invasions your louche hack has ever witnessed through his bloodshot eyes) doesn't however distract from a promising set that at various stages reminds us of Bloc Party and Pale Saints with a faint drizzling of emo.

Imagine your clapped-out correspondent's embarrassment, dear reader, when the scarf-clad brunette from earlier turns out to be the singer/guitarist Laura-Mary from headliners Blood Red Shoes! In my beleagured defence, the promo pictures suggested someone more vampish and heavily mascara'd than the demure-looking damsel currently stage front, although appearances can be deceptive as their set goes to show.

Reading* apparently makes Laura-Mary sick and it's immediately clear that time avoiding libraries and newsagents has been well spent boning up on Bikini Kill and Sleater-Kinney as her singing and guitar-playing supplies the hard rock edge to the duo's sound. Drummer Steven Ansell also sings, at a not dissimilar key to Laura-Mary, creating an unusual harmonising effect for a boy-girl pairing. While the band's influences can be traced here and there, they're synthesised into a unique sound that goes beyond their core components, producing powerful rock music with genuine melodic flair. Best new band of 2007? Could just be that Blood Red Shoes will show a clean pair of well-turned heels to the chasing pack in the coming months.

*as in what you do with books, not the Berkshire town. Although it's entirely possible that place makes her gag and vom as well.



Blogger Ben said...

"Could just be that Blood Red Shoes will show a clean pair of well-turned heels to the chasing pack in the coming months".

Hmm. Prefer my "Blood Red Shoes diaries" pun.... ;)

Haven't thought much of The Black Flash from their MySpace stuff - all a bit zeitgeist-pandering.

12:47 AM  
Blogger Simon said...

At least you have an excuse not to have realised it was Laura-Mary. I only realised at a recent gig that I'd been standing behind the headliners' singer when she went on stage myself, only in my case it was the distinctly less easy to misidentify Shingai from the Noisettes.

6:44 PM  
Blogger Dead Kenny said...

Ben, problem with *your* pun is it requires a knowledge of late-night softporn cable TV to get it, you smutty man.

Simon, would that be a case of Shingai Surprise, then?

10:45 PM  

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