Tuesday, May 27, 2008

New Loud Rockets and The Beams at The Assembly

The Beams & New Loud Rockets at The Assembly: 24 May 2008 The Assembly is without doubt my favourite music venue in Cape Town. Besides for getting phenomenally lost getting there (I live in a small town, ok!), I was lank excited for this gig. But nothing could have prepared me for what I was in for on that fateful Saturday night… I have seen New Loud Rockets on more occasions than I would like to calculate, because I know even I will think I sound like a crazed groupie. The band has yet to disappoint me. Possibly the only thing better than singing shamelessly to the cool Indie Rock and –Pop strokes of their EP, Let’s Play House, is seeing these boys perform live! While lead vocalist John Seth sounds at least as good live as on CD, the intensified instrumentals only do the band justice when they step out of studio and onto the stage. That, combined with the fervour of their sizeable- and enthusiastic posse of fans, always makes for a performance to be remembered. But for once I am going to cease my unrelieved ranting of the Rockets and focus instead on their opening act: The Beams. Even the boss’ insistence at their awesomeness did not set me up sufficiently for how much I would dig this act. Originating from Cape Town, they have adequately dominated the local club scene and, having not yet celebrated their second year of existence, they are hard to keep up with: the band has already seen two performances at Rocking the Daisies, one at the Oppikoppi Easter Festival and many more which my word-count restrictions do not allow to be included (if that gives you any idea of the extent of this list). Their sound is undeniably Indie, but it is far less exclusive than most Indie acts I have stumbled across in my lifetime. It is an eclectic fusion of post-punk stadium rock, with strokes of Brit pop and dance, along with a transparent influence of the old-school rock that never fails to make the crowd nostalgic: The Smiths; Joy Division- I could get hopelessly carried away! But perhaps the only thing more notable than their talent is the frontman himself. I have watched countdowns celebrating the men dubbed ‘The Greatest Frontmen of All Time’ and I can confidently say that Paul Maree has what it takes. Not only does he sing (and quite ably, at that), but he graces a score of (somewhat random) instruments, keeping the show uniquely exciting. On top of his palpable talent, he possessed enough energy on stage to render the crowd hypnotized, dancing throughout the performance, not once distracted from the theatrics- and musical genius unfolding in front of them. Having seen The Beams, I got lost, once again. This time, however, it was in the sheer excitement of having discovered a treasure of a band that reiterates why I am in this industry and why the South African music scene is so exciting right now.

1 comment:

Richard Cole King said...

Hey, I also did a review on the Assembly gig. Check it if you are interested. http://smacktalkmybum.blogspot.com/2008/05/beams-and-rockets-assemble.html