The Kabeedies @ The Hope
There’s a lot of emphasis on intensity and passion in music. Quite understandably too, the ability to convey emotions through sound is ingrained in society and those that can convey it better than others are often idolised for it. The same can be said for performances too. Ones that make your spine tingle are not regular occurences, and you need to look no further than Nirvana’s legendary MTV unplugged performance for how powerful they can be. It’s not just emotion either, there’s no weeping in the Arctic Monkey’s brash debut but the relatable message of their beery tales and spiky riffs got to people all the same.
So is music all about intensity, direction and passion? It’s difficult to see this as anything other than a critique in comparison to the star studded introduction, but the Kabeedies don’t exude anywhere near the intensity, nor the subtly critical message of the above acts, but in no way does it stop them from being thoroughly enjoyable. And heck, that’s without acknowledging that, maybe just maybe, they have ulterior goals in becoming a band.
To elaborate then, not all artists walked the earth tormented, portraying their emotions in cryptic ways and cutting their ears off, some just wanted to create beautiful paintings. Potentially considered shallow by critics, it’s still no accident that it’s their artwork that hangs on your own bathroom wall, and not just in a museum. In the same way then, one would imagine not all bands set out to encapsulate and make audible the cultural values and pressures in which they exist. Some just want to make music and enjoy themselves. And there’s not a thing wrong with that.
You can probably see where this is going, the Kabeedies’ recently released cheerful sophomore effort SOAP – the reason for their tour – takes off just where their scintillatingly upbeat debut left off, and from their energetic show at the Hope, things are just as fun, loose and lighthearted as ever.
The night began with part time tour support Alloy Ark. Slightly more reserved than what was expected of the headliners, the contrast of their big riffs and cutesy vocals brought them some attention. The stripped vocals of perhaps their most accomplished track Blue - – you said I was crazy – lingering in people’s minds well after they left the small stage. The excitement for the Kabeedies was definitely felt. The Norwich four-piece have really managed to gain a following for themselves with their British take on the afro-beat Vampire Weekend rocked the indie world with in 2008.
All jittery guitar, group chants and frenetic vocals they took the stage by storm. So much so that their reasons for being there became obvious. Fun. Everyone was enjoying themselves, the band, the audience, probably even the sound engineer. From the soaring ‘long long way to drive’ of single Eyes to the wonderfully infectious bass line of Come Out Of The Blue. Their self described ‘shit pop music’ had everyone present immersed in the joviality their existence is based on. In fact, the most satisfying outcome of this particularly enjoyable gig wasn’t the music, nor emotion or intensity of their performance. It was the fact that as these guys continue on their 20 date UK tour and following European tour, I can sit happy, knowing that at amidst all the doom and gloom of today, it’s still possible for people to make a living from emanating a little fun and humour into the world – and there’s still plenty of ears willing to listen.
Alloy Ark - Blue [click on arrow to download]
The Kabeedies - Eyes