Electric Ballroom

The Big Pink, expanded from the usual two-piece to a five strong band, take to the Electric Ballroom’s stage in a barrage of light and sound. The first thing that strikes you is the contrast between the band live and their recorded output. Here, guitars rage and the live drums are loud and aggressive whereas on debut album, "A Brief History of Love", the music has soft edges, drum machines and swoons rather than pummels. Not a word is exchanged with the crowd and singer Robbie Furze looks like a latter day Gary Numan while his bass player head bangs and skulks about like Twiggy Ramirez. All this noise and posturing fails to draw a reaction from the crowd, the band seem to be playing for themselves and, at times, frankly they look better than they sound. Thankfully, ‘Velvet’ emerges from the smoke, lights and formless noise giving the crowd a glimpse of what the band can do.

Unfortunately, this is a merely a mid-set anomaly and the band retreat into undulating but unexciting noise with songs like ‘Frisk’. If The Big Pink want to go down the route of cacophonous sound they need to up the volume a bit and bludgeon more often. In many respects they seem to be finding their live identity as they go on but with big gigs lined up with Muse they could be a different prospect in a few months time.

Predictably the biggest cheer of the night goes to ‘Dominoes’ and the crowd begins to move for once and a mass sing along ensues with every punter going: ‘these girls fall like dominoooooes, dominoooooes!’ With this song our evening with The Big Pink ends, no encore, no ‘thank you London!’ but somehow, the abrupt starkness of the house lights seems to be an appropriate ending.