Monday, February 04, 2008

There will be Blood

Blood Red Shoes/Make Model/The Screening, Leicester Charlotte, 29th January 2008

There seems to be a three-line whip for the local music scene tonight, possibly due to the presence of The Screening opening the bill, chanting fans in tow. Like the Displacements (see Summer Sundae review passim) they're a local band with a big future, NME cuttings and a deal in place. And like the Displacements... well, they're much like the Displacements without the harmonies, in that there's nothing you've not heard before here, trading as they do in big hooky anthemry a la a less smart We Are Scientists or a less overtly cocksure Courteeners. They're trying to fit in with the prevailing dancefloor indie trend (of 2004) but apart from finding some Bloc Party fractured rhythms on their last song there's nothing here that leaps out as anything but the thought that they have too much of an eye on the immediately commercial.

Passing by on the other side in another way, unfortunately, are Glasgow's Make Model, who are gradually taking over from tonight's headliners as the support band du jour. Their own aim seems to be the streamlined choral leftfield melodies of Broken Social Scene circa You Forgot It In People fed through the Scotpop filter of the Delgados, My Late Novel and a little Franz Ferdinand and with EMI support and plenty of touring ahead they certainly have the potential to be something special given time, but tonight nothing really takes off and faced with an apathetic crowd much of it feels one-paced and underpowered.

Underpowered certainly isn't something you can accuse Blood Red Shoes of. "Last time we played here 25 people came - what the fuck's happened?" Steven Ansell rhetorically wonders aloud as he and Laura-Mary Carter take the stage for the beginning of hostilities. What happened was a couple of years' non-stop gigging and refinement to a tee of their powerfully direct two-piece all-action guttural garage punk. While more than the sum of their parts the pair, finally on the road towards promoting April's debut album Box Of Secrets a good two and a half years on from their debut single, both bring something of themselves to the party, Carter the misleadingly sweet girl who once the guitar is strapped on unleashes torrents of pre-grunge American underground riffing - I suspect an influence from Sleater-Kinney's Carrie Brownstein - Ansell somehow not missing a beat of the sometimes whirlwind drumming while simultaneously singing. The chemistry in their playing and onstage interaction is such that it'd clearly fall apart if either were giving anything less, and as it is it's virtually relentless and louder and grittier than any two-piece has the right to be, especially when I Wish I Was Someone Better is played at virtual warp speed, Ansell passing immediate comment afterwards with the only words that seem apposite at the time: "fucking hell! Fucking hell!" And after 45 minutes of high energy melody meltdown he still has enough left about him to make for the entrance with stickers to give away. In all ways, they're clearly unstoppable.


Post a Comment

<< Home