It’s Bad Faces’ first ever show tonight, and despite the nerves that must come with that, solo singer Dan and his delicious (and I think vinyl-stringed?) acoustic pick and strum their way through a thoroughly charming set of songs. Each is paced nicely, not so slow as to be funereal but never fast enough to spiral out of control, and he’s comfortable enough on stage, keeping eye contact and – for me anyway – making it seem like he’s been doing it a while. Do more shows, yeah?
See more Bad Faces photos here
It’s hard not to think that Mere Cats are a bit of a jarring addition to the bill – but then that would be the case on literally any bill, unless the rest of the lineup consisted of Velociraptor and Ricky Martin, with Mere Cats sounding a awful lot like the former doing the latter. Despite my perfectly natural aversion to all things bongo-related, watching all seven of them shoehorn themselves onto the Brighton Up Bar’s cosy stage and then barreling out a series of songs that engage the hips and electrify the shoulders is huge fun. Makes you wonder why we don’t do it more often to be honest.
See more Mere Cats photos here
With Fox are drummer-less tonight but it’s not such a bad thing, since it allows us to bathe in some gentle tunes underpinned by some silky keys and a totally cowboy twelve-string. There’s a lot of shimmering sound in here, dreamy as a blanket made of ice cream.
See more With Fox photos here
Bronte launch their EP tonight with grins on their faces and a spring in their step, all twinkling folk, finger-picking acoustic, and moments of Fleetwood Mac-ish bombast. These meatier bits are what raises the game above your standard indie folk type outfit, and it’s tight, well-constructed fun that ever so gently thumps you over the head with song.
See more Bronte photos here