Review - British Sea Power at Roadmender, Northampton
Foliage. Lots of foliage, and plastic birds. That's what a few hundred people are here tonight for.Â And some elegiac rock too, perhaps more importantly.
It is undoubtedly an overused phrase is music coverage, but British Power really are the most underrated contemporary rock band in Britain.
Even your humble reviewer had forgotten just how good they could be and it took some radio play of new album tracks from sixth album (proper) Let the Dancers Inherit the Party to be reminded of their true, brilliantine colours.
Following openers Ill, tonight begins with the lead track from said album and it hits home with its unsettling, Echo & The Bunnymen-esque dramatic jangling.
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The set starts reasonably restrained, with the band concentrating hard and sharing a few jokes with the audience.
Northampton is treated to a set which takes in the highlights of their entire career, right back to 2001.
The performance does lean a little heavier on their sole top 10 album, 2008’s Do You Like Rock Music? though, from which No Lucifer is a definite high point (aided by the arrival of the band’s famous dancing bears in the audience).
Early single, the Pixies-indebted Remember Me sees the ungainly sight of fists being pumped, but with good reason - it is a superb belting rock song and is responsible for bringing the band a lot of early attention.
Other notable songs tonight are latest single, the krauty disco groove of Keep On Trying (Sechs Freunde) (hello to Bog Man!) and the breathless Joy Division-ish Carrion.
They finish with the flailing post-punk of another early single, The Spirit Of St Louis, and curious new cut Fun Boogie.
What a pleasure it is to witness a once great band returning to what made it special, while still moving forward. Long may it continue.
British Sea Power played:
It Ended On An Oily stage
Who’s In Control
What You’re Doing
How Will I Ever Find My Way Home?
No Red Indian
Praise For Whatever
Lights Out For Darker Skies
Keep On Trying
The Great Skua
Machineries Of Joy
The Spirit Of St Louis