Tuesday, 6 December 2011

The Low Anthem - Roundhouse 16th November 2011

The Low Anthem played the Roundhouse last month, their biggest UK show to date. Unfortunately at times, I felt the delicacy of their instruments was lost in the vast space. While the clarinet solos were beautiful, many of the miraid of other weird and wonderful instruments were totally inaudiable, and I was as close as you could get, goodness knows what you could hear from he back.

I had my fingers crossed that they would have better lighting than their outing to the Festival Hall earlier this year, when they played by candle light (no, not really but they might have well have done) Sadly, us photographers were in the same boat as last time. The stage was so dark that all of the bands equipment had a blue LED light attached so they could find it in the dark. Now I'm not saying that a bands performance should be dictated by having enough light for the photographers, but as I left, a fan at the back yelled 'turn the fucking lights on'. It stands to reason in my mind, that if the people who have paid to see you play cant actually see you, it is indeed, time to turn the fucking lights on.

The Low Anthem

The Low Anthem

The Low Anthem

Thankfully, the two support acts were both well lit and well recived. William Elliott Whitmore & Simone Felice delivered surprisingly intimate sets for such a large venue, showing that one musician and a guitar (or banjo) can really fill even a large stage. Both were a complete delight to watch and listen to. Whitmore, who is by his own admission used to much smaller venues, even took the time to chat to people in the front row and was aimiable and chatty throught his set. Simone Felice added some storytelling to his set, giving a bit of background to some of his songs. The good thing about having great supports like this, is that I get to stay and watch the rest of their sets. The evening was a real and rare treat.

William Elliott Whitmore

Simone Felice

I hate to get all moaney, but it's a real shame that phoptographers get ejected after the first three songs... all the musicians joined on stage to perform a Leonard Cohen cover for the last song of the evening, to be recorded for posperity only by a sea of mobile phones no doubt.

For the less photographer-centric Line Of Best Fit review click here.

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