The Social, Sunday October 14 2012
The occasion of the Liverpudlians second appearance in the capital crept up on me and chose to delight me in just the way I secretly hoped it would.
Support for this show was the hotly-tipped local fivesome The Hypnotic Eye. But this was a rare off night for them, their intense yet poppy flower punk sounds, so complex and beguiling on record, were lost in the shoddy sound that this oddly-shaped concrete bunker could produce for them. Grace Lightman's soul shredding vocals were barely audible, and that frankly was criminal.
The Social dealt with the softer palette produced by the Whispers much more satisfactorily. Michael Murphy's tender voice could be singing you lullabies in Hell, for the dark undertow of love gone bad/unrequited in his romantic pop-sike songs is always evident. I think it's that emotional dialectic that makes them such a special turn. Their 11 song set included all thier known tracks from their first EP and single, plus some unknown crackers that I will no doubt fall in love with more when I hear them recorded. 'Odyssey Mile', 'Dandelion Eyes', 'Amanda Lavender' all got the audience singing along. Those that came out on a cold Sunday night certainly went home warmer. Their short tour still has three dates this week to go...so go!
Also must mention Mr Richard Norris (Time And Space Machine) playing some sublime weirdo/leftfield/psych music from the past few decades throughout the night. He knows his onions well enough he could be French!