Thursday 2 December 2010

Local Natives @ The Forum, London

The orginal post on the 405 is here.

Last week I got the chance to witness Local Natives’s celebratory last show of the year before they headed back to the studio to record the next album. It took place at Kentish Town’s HMV Forum, a beautiful venue that was perfect for the occasion.

First up are Cloud Control, hailing from the Australian Blue Mountains (near Sydney) who enchant the audience with their blissful, hazed out, percussive indie folk. They give a polished performance and definitely recruit new fans in the process with their lustrous, distorted guitar riffs that draw comparisons between them and bands such as Tame Impala (who they have already toured with), Local Natives, who they are supporting tonight, whilst the folk vibes lead to Fleet Foxes similarities.

The next band to take to the forum stage are Moshi Moshi favourites Summer Camp, consisting of Jeremy Warmsley and ex Platform Magazine editor, Elizabeth Sankey. They dive straight in with an abridged version of ‘Why don’t you Stay’ from their debut EP, Young, which was released in September, followed immediately after by fan favourite ‘Was it Worth it.’ Their set comprises of material from the EP, such as ‘Jake Ryan’ and ‘Veronica Sawyer’, and new songs such as ‘88’ and ‘Losing my mind’; all 80’s tinged, smile producing, lo-fi pop diamonds of course, in true Summer Camp style. They end their triumphant set with their most recent single ‘Round the Moon’ which goes down a treat; a perfect end to a smooth set.

The venue finally fills up to its full capacity, just in time for headliners, Local Natives, as they take to the stage to mass cheers; an atmosphere of hysteria dominating the room. Firstly, they plunge into ‘Camera Talk’ and the audience is lost in their own excitement. They then play a set comprising of songs from their much loved album, Gorilla Manor, which goes down a dream with the audience as that’s exactly what they came here to witness. Driving percussion and jangly guitar riffs urge gentle dancing amongst the audience, whilst contagious vocal refrains force a group sing-a-long. The crowd’s passion for Local Natives is clear for even the blindest of eyes to see. The band’s set is graceful, humble and everything you’d want it to be. Local Natives are not a band that offer a ‘show’ as such and it suits them down to their bones. They leave the stage after performing an elegant version of ‘Airplanes’ before returning for an encore of the utterly gorgeous ‘Who Knows, Who Cares’ and the heavily percussive, crowd pleaser ‘Sun Hands.’

They then terminate their performance by thanking the audience for having them and London as a whole for being a “second home” to them over past year. Local Natives are certainly unlikely indie-folk heroes but their audience perceive them as such and their performance tonight proves that they deserve the credit they receive.

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