REVIEW - BROADCAST
Koko By Michael Howard
BIRMINGHAM five-piece Broadcast recently downsized to just
two members drummer James Cargill and singer Trish Keenan.
Latest album, Tender Buttons was completed by the two of them
and is not surprisingly, a stark stripped down piece of work.
But where the album is all tinny drum machines, cheap Casio tones
and cool detached sing-song vocals, the augmented live group adds
substantial flesh to the skinny song structures.
The surreal Black Cat and metronomic Bit 35 get a fearsome thrashing
from the drums/bass/keyboards line up. On latest single Americas
Boy, Trishs deadpan vocals coolly allude to American soldiers
and the Iraq war.
Musically Broadcast carry their influences lightly, theres
plenty of Stereolab and Can but the uninflected vocals married
to the dreamy, hypnotic music invoke a surprising sense of innocence
Much of the set was a run through of the album and the band hit
a steady groove of vintage distressed synths, drones and crisp
drums a big cheer greeting the signature, super catchy
Come On Lets Go. As they embark on a long tour, theres
a sense that the band are still testing the songs live.
But the gig really lifts off when someone finds out that its
Trishs birthday and the whole venue sings Happy Birthday,
causing the band to loosen up and lose some of the froideur, finishing
with the rousing I Found the F and a mesmeric 60/40.
Demo of the week The Pigeon
DOTW had a bit of a break last week, a trip down to Brighton
for a walk on the pier, some candy floss and a donkey ride.
Happy days. But who could have imagined the dismay such a holiday
would cause back in north London? Grooves fans were panicking,
ringing our offices and demanding to know how we expected them
to cope without their weekly dose of student-rag style fringe
Phew! Everybody take a deep breath we are back and
we continue with The Pigeon Detectives, one of the fringe scenes
genuine talents. Perfect fodder for indie fans who like to jump
up and down as if its 1995, this bands crunching guitar
is simple but effective.
Their new rough and ready demo recommended by a guy I met
at the Dublin Castle in Camden Town is a hurtling thrash
of Britpop that you could imagine the silhouette girl on the iPod
adverts dancing crazy to all night long.
Opening track Im Always Right is the band on top form, choppy
riffs, surfed by sing-a-long vocals. But its just one song
from a collection by the Detectives that deserve attention.
You Know I Love You is wonderfully infectious without ever curdling
in your head, while the stuttering blues rock of I Dont
Know How to Say Goodbye at this level is just as
They play the Dublin Castle on Monday night it should be
well worth popping along to see if their live act is as good as
this mighty fine demo.
More info at www.thepigeondetectives.com but remember, when they
are on the front of the NME, that increasingly tedious music magazine,
you read it here first.
n Send promos to Demo of the Week, 40 Camden Road, Camden Town,
NW1 9DR. Send information to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Restraint pays off for pianist
PREVIEW - Ivan Moracev
THE Wigmore has a real treat this week as it welcomes Czech pianist
Ivan Moracev for a lunchtime concert on Monday.
He is the antithesis of the piano school Glenn Gould School, rather
than be demonstrative, Moracev maintains his cool at the piano stool,
lending his performances a restrained, dignified quality.
He has been particularly celebrated for his performances of Beethoven,
his clinical command of his sonatas is impressive, Schubert and
Debussy he seems particularly suited to the impressionistic
So on Monday, recorded for Radio Three, Moracev will be performing
Schumanns Kindeszenen, Debussys Pour Le Piano and Chopins
Nocturne in C sharp Minor, Nocturne in D Flat and Ballade number
1 in G Minor.
The concert begins at 1pm.
Sheehan to sing pop with clarity
PREVIEW - Kim Sheehan
FOR those seeking a somewhat mindless but entertaining couple
of hours, they could do worse than head for the City Temple Church
in Holborn Viaduct on Tuesday for a concert of classic songs.
It wont please purists to see Andrew Lloyd-Webber sharing
the billing with Puccini but Kim Sheehan is a consummate performer
and has a wonderful, clear voice.
Tickets are a charity driven £25 it is raising money
for Cancer Research and ties the Royal Marsden Hospital and Breast
Cancer Awareness Week and the price includes wine and nibbles.
For more information ring 020 7935 1805.
Triumph for any season
CD REVIEW - Vivaldi
RESPLENDENT in a beautiful box with a picture of the Doges
Palace by Canaletto, Hyperion has released Vivaldis entire
canon of sacred music as part of its 25th birthday celebrations.
Featuring 10 discs and 19 performers, including counter-tenor James
Bowman and mezzo-soprano Ann Murray, and the Kings Consort
and its choir, it is a magnificent production. Much of the works
were recorded at St Jude-on-the-Hill in Hampstead Garden Suburb
a church with haunting acoustics.
That there is 10 discs to enjoy at all is something of an achievement
given that little of Vivaldis work was said to have survived
in the 1920s. He was a prodigious composer and astonishingly ground
breaking hearing these recordings it becomes hard to exaggerate
the scope of his influence. There are 13 hours of enjoyment here
and it is as thorough an investigation into any composer that can
be found. A significant achievement.
Get yourself in tune
IF you fancy a sing song yourself but have little time for regular
practices go to St Benet and All Saints Church, Kentish Town, to
join in a performance of Mozarts Requiem
Raising money for starving and diseased children in South Africa,
anyone wanting to join in is asked to got to the church at 5.15pm
for a rehearsal. The concert begins at 7.30pm.
CLICK HERE FOR LISTINGS