White Room: psychedelic chaos and discombobulation
The suitably hazy and neon basement of Patterns in Brighton plays host to an evening of rising psychedelic bands from the nearby vicinity and an audience that leans heavily towards the teenage demographic. Like stumbling accidentally into some unknown after school disco fuelled by Cherryade and stratospheric hormones. The tone of the evening set and fixed at confusion, never seems really to shift from there.
The first band of the evening are Method Actress
, a foursome from Brighton, whose dreamy music washes softly and whimsically from one end to another beginning without pause.
Following them, is Underwater Boys
, a dream pop duo of two brothers from the South East, Tom and Nicholas Klar backed with an able band. Their look - all 90s Hacienda and bowl cuts, juxtaposes their often mixed bag sound. Like a cross between Pearl Jam, Jesus and Mary Chain, Mamas and Papa's with shades of Zeppelin and the Mondays thrown in. Their musical dexterity, clear song arcs, and togetherness surprises and ignites the crowd into a moshing frenzy, leaving them wanting more as their short set draws to a close.
The headliners of the evening White Room have clearly been making themselves known with the increase in crowd size heralding their set. Plus celebrity endorsements such as Paul Weller, Myles Kane and Sara Cox, make the anticipation palpable.
, a five-piece made up of a seeming collection of university stoners fronted by a deranged and hyperactive Domhnall Gleeson-lookalike, are tight, self-assured, and appear to relish the captivated audience.
Quickly it becomes apparent that their impressive recorded material differs greatly from the live sound we're witnessing. Largely due to the poor sound in the venue. Despite this, their set is peppered with songs that are well crafted and vocals that soar, on occasion.
Songs like 'Stole The IV'
offer catchy hooks and spells of Roxy Music combined, with Pink Floyd and the Kaiser Chiefs. That strange concoction, like an accidental recipe is unique and often refreshing, and will appeal hugely to some but could leave others confused.
Jake Smallwood is confident as a front man and certainly knows how to best engage with his audience. On occasion however, the band drifts away into swirly jams, or explorations of Rocky Horror Show indie homage. As strange indeed as it sounds. It's not long though before they're back to delivering their unique form of passioned indie anthems with unabridged ambition.
White Room are definitely a talented band with some good songs, a superstar frontman and a noticeable following. Overall though, the live show can, at times be confusing and leave you feeling like you've missed something. The point, maybe.
Listen to White Room's Double EP 'Eight' below