The Soundcarriers - The Victoria Dalston, London - Gigs - Reviews - Soundblab

The Soundcarriers - The Victoria Dalston, London

by charles filtness Rating: Release Date:
The Soundcarriers - The Victoria Dalston, London
The Soundcarriers - The Victoria Dalston, London

If the 1960s had The Zombies, famous now for releasing their masterpiece Odessey And Oracle before promptly splitting up, then similarly the 2010s could have had The Soundcarriers. Between 2009 and 2014 they released four astonishing albums before seemingly disappearing.   

Their sound is a swirl of kaleidoscopic 1960s keyboards, psychedelic, and beatific guitar pop.  It is irresistible, at times they bring to mind elements of Julie Driscoll & Brian Auger, earlier Pink Floyd, to Stereolab, Broadcast and much in between. The music they make is absolutely equal to those other celebrated artists. 

The band released their last album Entropicalia in 2014 after which they appeared to have been on some sort of extended hiatus, either that or they'd split up. Regardless of plenty of critical success, they seem to have been perpetually under the radar. Consequently, their first 3 albums that were initially released in such small numbers and have never been repressed are now virtually impossible to find. The most recent Ghost Box release would occasionally be back in stock but that seemed to be the extent of any news in recent years. The chances of a new album or live dates seemed fairly remote.  But 2018 brought some indications that things were happening.  There was talk of new music, surprisingly linked to the soundtrack of a new US drama series Lodge 49. This one-off gig headlining the 4th Shindig night in the back room of a Hackney pub was then announced.

The set tonight is taken almost entirely from their back catalogue. It's a phenomenal performance, no hint or suggestion that this is their first live outing in over 6 years.  A couple of songs in and the man to my right shouts "We love you". "And we DO love them" comes the reply from further in front. There are surely plenty of Shindig regulars in this sold out 150 capacity room, but there are also many here who know the band and share this affection and excitement for them.  The man to my right is called Phil I later discover, he's seen them live before, tonight they sound tighter and more guitar-heavy than previously he says.  The response from the crowd is rapturous throughout. Loud applause brings them back to the stage for an encore in which they play a new song that reassuringly suggests album number five isn't going to disappoint. After more insistent cheering we are treated to one final and seemingly unplanned song 'we might be a bit rusty on this one'.  They are anything but. It's an exceptional gig from start to finish, the band seems genuinely touched by the response they get from the crowd.  It is a triumphant return.

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