Live Review: Slow Club at Camden Barfly – 26th September 2011

By on Tuesday, 11th October 2011 at 2:00 pm

It’s been a busy few weeks for Slow Club. The duo have been on the biggest tour of their careers to date, playing to big capacity audiences across the country, including a huge show at Shepherds Bush Empire (during which they played an acoustic rendition of ‘Christmas TV’) and have generally been on the road promoting their latest album to their best ability.

Tonight is the end of that tour, the ‘Paradise’ album tour closing party at Camden Barfly. The Sheffield duo come on stage to a warm reception of mostly competition winners and open up with new single ‘Where I’m Waking’. It’s a highlight from the album and sounds just as fantastic in the live arena. Lyrics “you’ve got the brains I’ve got the body” are a far cry from debut album ‘Yeah So?’s meek beginnings. But then again, so is most of this album. ‘Paradise’ in whole sounds bigger, more grown up and generally a more rounded record. That said, that doesn’t make it better as some parts can make Slow Club sound a bit like just another duo.

‘Our Brilliant Friends’ soon follows, reminding everyone that Slow Club can still be the cute band everyone present fell in love with a few years ago, and the rapport that the band build with a crowd is something you can’t fake. Joking that they’d play some oldies (wahaaayyy) and some newies (wahaaayyy), the band make everyone in the room fall back in love with them, almost as much as their music.

You can really tell how much Slow Club have grown as a band on tracks like ‘Horses Jumping’. Almost a return to ‘Yeah So?’, it feels somehow more rich in sound, especially at the halfway point with the beautiful “good love is hard to regret, when you know it was real”, almost a soundtrack for repair for many in the future, I’m sure.

‘Two Cousins’, the first taste of ‘Paradise’ and first track of the new album is the main set closer. It brings along mild crowd participation for the first time all evening as there’s been a generally good, if quiet vibe in the Barfly tonight, and after a brief ‘showbiz’ interval, the band come back on and perform the loudest and best version of ‘Giving Up on Love’ I’ve heard to date. It, like much of Slow Club, oozes fun with a dark lyrical shine. A lot of drum hits later, the tour’s over and it’s back to whatever Slow Club do when they’re not touring.

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