Sunday, 7 November 2010


This is part two of live-music-review-week-and-a-half, and I'm sure it hasn't been highly anticipated.

This Thursday I saw Performance/(We Are) Performance, I'm not really sure which is the official name as I still see both around, at The Silver Bullet and they were ably supported by Phoebe Coco and Elephant.  (No link because I couldn't find them online, type 'Elephant' as band name in MySpace search and you get 97 pages of results, and, allow that.

Phoebe Coco was good. She's either local and was therefore able to bring loads of friends and family or she is one of North London's premier artists because she almost filled up the room, albeit a very small one, and even did an encore where she played 'Seven Nation Army' on her keyboard. This was how she did her whole performance, just her and a keyboard that was just set to play like a piano. No effects. No nothing. Ace-amundo.

Elephant, however, were not welcomed quite so rapturously. This was unfortunate and made me want to really like them. Most of the crowd had either left or retired to the tables in the other part of the club and everyone who was watching was just leaning against the walls leaving a huge space in the room. Anyhow, they were sort of chillwave-y, maybe. Not seen a chillwave artist live and I can imagine them being a bit like this. It was a guy on a guitar, a girl on a keyboard and singing and a laptop on a chair. The guitars were loud, maybe too loud, but were similar in style to those you might here on 'Infinity by The xx.In fact, they were a little The xx-ish, just not as good. For now, at least.

Finally, we get down to the main act. Performance were playing to celebrate the release of their second album, Red Brick Heart , which is pretty good by the way and is available on iTunes. Their latest album has far fewer synth driven tracks and is much more guitar heavy, possibly because between album 1 and 2 they went from a four piece to a three piece. But, it also helps to keep them fresh. You don't want to see a band producing the same album over and over.

The live set was pretty banging, it has to be said.  The venue is extremely intimate, with a capacity of only 180, which meant I was able to be literally a couple of metres from the band, although I was a little unnerved when it felt like I was making eye contact with them.  Maybe that's just because I'm weird.  They played nearly the whole of their new album and only one track, 'Surrender,' from their first and everyone loved it.  the whole place was getting it's groove on to these sexy Mancunian beats, and it was possibly one of my favourite performances ever.

Oh yeah, and lead singer Joe Stretch is an internationally published writer.

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