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White Flowers, MOTH Club, London

  • Published in Live

Generally, by rule of thumb, flowers say it all. They’re often thought of as the brighteners of even the dreariest of times, be it soggy London days or failing health right up until the ultimate capstone, funerals.

Death be damned however I’m still poorly and propped up by pillows layered in bed sores that’re maturing nicely. I’m all Netflixed out but recuperating from some undiagnosed and possibly life-threatening illness, it’s the perfect time to catch up on music and emails. Fortunately for me these aren’t mutually exclusive. Ruthlessly I reap my inbox. As emails blur together one after another are culled until I come across White Flowers (@WhiteFlowersssss) outta Preston. I’m kicking myself for not seeing this message sooner because I’m instantly hooked.

I’m not sure if I’m floating through a fever dream or a cloud at this point but this dreamy noir duo is the UK's best kept secret, for the time being. Like breadcrumbs strewn upon a windy day their music leads me one way never fully letting me settle before committing to a change in tack; my musical bearings might be slightly skewed but this, however, doesn’t detract from the divine yet comforting unpredictability piping through my headphones. These layers spliced into their music add next level aural textures, seemingly they’ve pulled it off with an ease that’s as completely disarming as it is sophisticated and technically profound. I’ve greedily absorbed both tracks 'Night Drive' and 'Porta' before realizing there’s nothing left to consume or be consumed by.

Months pass, illness (just barely) overcome, and I’ve got no joy when it comes to tour dates or new tracks. I’m left relentlessly messaging promoters to no avail when suddenly two dates are seemingly announced out of nowhere. One you’ve missed at the MOTH this past Friday, the next you’ve still got a chance to snag. Just before 10pm Katie Drew and Joey Cobb ascend onto a shadowy lit stage making their debut. The lighting scheme changes for the first time this evening, a different tone is struck. It’s obviously orchestrated but I relish these theatrics. A dulling of our visual senses in favour of sound. Deepening tones shrouded in the new and mysterious ambiance envelops us as much as it does their music. The onlookers compelled draw nearer. They’re the third act of the night in a line-up of duos but it’s the first time I’ve heard applause by way of disruption rather than chatter from the audience. We’re not really left a choice, the velvety tones expand around us sucking up the air in the room, it’s any wonder how Katie’s voice and keys find their way weaving through Joey’s strings both manage their grip on us without faltering. It’s a performance as solid as they come. I’m not left disappointed and neither is anyone else.

Although their set withers away White Flowers won’t be wilting any time soon. Although their moody tones are dark and brooding, they’ll brighten any room or stage they’re situated near. Next Show is March 4th at Rough Trade East, if you’re in London stop by and waft in a breath of the freshest music out this year thus far.  


Body Type, MOTH Club, London

  • Published in Live

I don't know what they're putting in the water over in Australia (it's sharks, seriously stay on land if you value your life) but whatever it is, it's making its way over here. 150 years ago if I someone asked you to name one Australian band you'd obviously say something like The Vines, Tame Impala, Cut Copy, Van She but more recent fledgling artists are pushing their way through the breach. You're probably hearing most notably Q award nominees Amyl And The Sniffers who have been playing the SHIT out of London this year with a mix of free/low-priced shows but they're not the only ones making waves and crossing over on them too, keep your eyes on the horizon because something's afoot. 

Youtube algorithm algorithming in the background as I'm ironing (I fucking hate ironing) a crease into my jeans a track pops up which pricks my ears up. Body Type's (@bodytypeband) track 'Stingray' (arguably the best model of the Corvette ever made) charged its way through my speakers and down my hearing tubes. Pausing the song I wasted no time opening my browser to answer my question whether (one you should be asking yourself too) they're playing near me anytime soon? They were indeed at my beloved MOTH in a few weeks. I fired off a message to their label with no luck but after a few days we reached out to the sirens themselves and within hours we'd heard back from their promo-team, we're in. 

Or were we? At the door I hear those fearful words striking terror in the hearts of any and all reviewers, 'you're not on the list'. After a bit of tap dance though I get a thumbs up and moments later I'm inside watching the band's soundcheck. At the bar Sophie (guitars/vocals) and Georgia (Bass/Vocals) shimmy up next to me unassumingly awaiting libations as well. 'Oh wow, you're Sophie and Georgia, right?' I wrench my neck skywards because not only are they giants in music but in real life too. They were and I thanked them for helping facilitate access to the show but they wave this away with a flick of the wrist and a toothy smile thanking me for being there, first class people all the way. 

The girls bow out of our convo and filter through the crowd listening to the support acts and engaging with their friends and fans, which there are a lot of. The gig didn't sell out but the venue was far from empty and even had A-list support from Dream Wife duo Alice and Rakel providing tunes between sets. Opening acts complete, the girls take the stage and form a scrum around Cecil (Percussion) and start to play backs to the crowd one by one turning to face us. What we're met with is a well honed performance full of energy and hidden messages wrapped behind smiles tied together with glances eye locking  members of both the audience and band. You feel yourself wanting to engage and have fun because they are. The group don't work well just because they've rehearsed their music, they are their music and come off more as close friends (gang) than band members. I can't help but notice just how in tune they are with one another. The set is filled with '80s hair metal headbanging showmanship including the classic trope of back to back bass vs guitar shred showdowns between Sophie and Georgia, spoiler alert we're all winners when this goes down. What you can expect these righteous ladies to deliver are the echoes of deeply tense minimal surf scales that'll keep you moving and hanging off every riff seeped in moody tones propped up by lyrics like, 'your tender touches in the night time, I can't sleep' on tracks like 'Insomnia'. Body Type's penetrating performance will overcome and tear down any barriers between you just as it has between them, Annabel (Vocals/Guitar), Sophie and Georgia can often be seen and heard singing in unison or chiming in to support the lead into the chorus, or the chorus itself. 

To say my experience watching Body Type was a fun and enjoyable (getting me out of my seat on more than one occasion) is probably the understatement of the century. I felt a connection, the kind you see between the girls themselves. This teases you out of your shell and over to their camp and it's a look, which I feel personally, really lends itself to not only between band member and audience or band member to band member but is the fundamental underlying property to their unique sound. Some groups you go to see but other groups see you and that's the case with Body Type. If it's not Georgia's cheeky smile, which she flashes at me breaking out of bad ass bass boss mode catching me firing off a snap (turned out blurry, sorry!), it's Sophie's heartfelt message to the audience on their second last song of the night. 'Every ounce of love in our hearts goes out and into every empty space in your hearts'. I'll leave you all with a few lyrics from a track that's on heavy rotation on my playlist currently 'Uma', "All for one, and one for all, I couldn't loose you any longer, I'm naked, shark attack!". Sharks, I knew it. 

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