song for the morning to sing
i pledge resistance to the flag
birth of the project then this. we present at tonight's big
event witness what appears to be the final stages of bravecaptain's
metamorphosis from yer more traditional singer-songwriter
(though admittedly there are few compositions among the bc
back catalogue to date that can be described as 'traditional')
to proper pop-star of the future.
okay maybe not pop-star of the future, but isn't this what
we imagined pop music would be like when we were kids? if
not we should have, because the truth is even as recently
as five years ago few of us could really have imagined
a gig being delivered like this.
if you haven't seen the photos yet, it's a simple set-up.
bloke behind a table with a pint and computer. the laptop
generates the tunes - in some cases the very same sound files
that will be released on cd at some point. it's a total solution.
you can compose and rework tracks as you tour, and then simply
plug your machine in at the venue and play your work in progress!
it's seems such an obvious, natural way of working it's a
wonder it feels so unique.
so to set the scene, we enter cardiff's famous clwb ifor bach
to be greeted by a crowd of generous numbers. clearly the
combined appeal of bravecaptain and the increasingly popular
gold chains is strong, especially as there's a mogwai gig
taking place just round the corner.
among the crowd are such names as euros and richard form gorky's
zygotic mynci, gruff rhys from super furry animals, mark bowen
ex-creation and now wichita recordings and mogwai themselves,
who appear before and after their own show to provide dj expertise.
bravecaptain takes to the stage at quarter past eleven, pint
in hand, and after firing up the laptop (it seems he's sensibly
turned his windows start-up sound off) the show begins with
the first of many new tracks. opening with a rough-sounding
high-hat, 'bobby seale' grows to combine thick drum sounds
with a mashed-up, looped speech (presumably a speech by bobby
as the tune develops it becomes apparent that it might not
be obvious when the next track has begun, but those thoughts
fade when the opening sample of 'song for the morning to sing'
kicks in. this beat-heavy reworking of a (very) old boo radley's
album track features martin's first singing of the night,
and his effect-soaked voice wrestles with the layers of sound
flowing from the laptop's output jack until the track ends
and the bout is declared a draw.
the set continues with new tracks in variations of the theme
- the theme being dirty beats, looped melody and two tablespoons
of panning. instantly recognisable is a much harder interpretation
of 'stronger', with full vocals over a dance beat. this is
followed by the much anticipated 'lazarus', though the exclusion
of lyrics at the expensive of a drawn out jam of the opening
dub parts is a slight disappointment.
we draw to a close with single-in-waiting 'i pledge resistance
to the flag', which slides seamlessly into a short, instrumental
version of 'down between'. and therein lies the trend that
must frustrate more casual bravecaptain fans - a half hour
set and only three minutes of music from the current album!
so excitement then. nobody present would deny tonight was
an exciting debut for the new-style live show. at the show's
sudden end, headline act gold chains is on stage to congratulate
bravecaptain. this was an accomplished performance, and the
inclusion of more songs that we know in a longer set should
make the forthcoming bravecaptain tour fascinating for fans
new and old. this is how it's meant to be.
review by bravecaptain.co.uk
if you have any reviews, photos or setlists from previous
bravecaptain live shows, please email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.