Slow Club Gig Preview For Their Queens Social Club Show (Harley Live – 12/12/13)
It’s all very well to “hold on to where you’re from” if “it’s where your heart goes, when you’re done”, but what happens if that place is Sheffield? Thus when you return to the Steel City and walk through the Wicker Arches dilapidated, tired-eyed but transformed; you’re greeted not by caterwauls of comfort but the apathetic and cacophonous snap! of countless Red Stripe cans, LAD chants of “you’re not from New York City, you’re from Rotherham!”, the final splutter of departed industry and an unsympathetic “yeah…so?” from the opportunistic, austerity adoring, trust fund activists. You realise that although you might know where you’re from, it doesn’t quite know you anymore.
Homecoming can be hard for the wide-eyed, especially if, on the road, you’ve developed a penchant for the exotic. But unlike Sheffield’s fab four, entrenched South-Yorkshire stalwarts Slow Club (Rebecca Taylor – Vox, Guitar & Kit, Charles Watson – Vox, Guitar & Keys) haven’t lost their roots in the bustle of New York or suddenly found themselves in the deserts of Deep South. Instead, through deft subtlety, they have slowly evolved from the Folk-Pop, cutesy, chair-playing ‘mixtape band’ of yore (providing wistfully naive young love odes to soundtrack many a hormonal bedroom teen’s tentative first romantic steps) into reluctant mentors and observers who in turn soundtrack those teens’ mid-20s weight-of-the-world crisis’ with a now far heightened arena-pop tower of timbre. Despite this sonically transformative journey, the duo have retained their prized ability to emphatically tease out the colours and shades of youth’s often erratic and delicate emotions. Which, combined with their aforementioned idiosyncrasies, heartbreakingly relatable lyricism and affection for festivity gives us all the more reason to longingly await the return of Slow Club.
Fitting, then, that their forthcoming gig at Queens Social Club combines not just a homecoming show with last-stop-of-the-tour fervour, but the date also falls far safe within the cosy boundaries of the festive month, and for a band in no way adverse to a Christmas tune or two (…they have a whole EP’s worth of them) punters can expect a raucous display of giddy Folk-Pop that tumbles sonically from the Peak-District highs of chorus-biting ‘Two Cousins’, ‘Me and You’ and ‘Our Most Brilliant Friends’ to the lyrically sublime lows of tentative, thought-stompers ‘Christmas TV’, ‘You, Earth or Ash’ and ‘Boys On Their Birthdays’ that, in ramshackle defiance, flicks two fingers at the meticulous falsity of seamless Indie Rock.
Powered by homely colloquialisms (such as Rebecca’s penchant for wearing the infamous ‘Rotherham is the New Berlin’ t –shirt), down on the farm (in Yorkshire) harmonies (their third album material is sounding increasingly Gospel and R’n’b influenced) and fireside cheer (it is Christmas after all) Slow Club will bring a brilliant, cacophonous 4-piece Rock show to perfectly compliment their majestic 2-piece performances of yore, and prove that sonic evolution does not have to entail emotional diminution.