Sunday, 7 December 2008

'Sup Review: Herclues & Love Affair - Matter - 28th November.

It's a weird experience going to Matter. After getting off the tube and walking towards the monumental structure that is the o2 centre, you are suddenly transported to Milton Keynes town centre on a Friday night...that is if Milton Keynes is actually inside a large shopping mall with fake palm trees and lots and lots of security guards - I wouldn't know, I've never been.

As far as 'super clubs' go, Matter has actually done quite well for itself. Lots of space to move around, a nice industrial warehouse look to it (championed by Panorama Bar in Berlin) and an amphitheatre sort of feel in the main room with ascending seats facing the stage so you can be that little bit more judging of the band/crowd beneath you.

But super club's aside, we came here to see Hercules & Love Affair - the much acclaimed 8 piece band who are well and truly bringing back disco. Hurrah.

To look at, the band are a bit of an odd bunch - Andy, the band's creator, stays out of the spotlight and plays keyboards and samples behind Kim Ann; a serene front woman with an androgynous look about her, and Nomi; a glamorous and vivacious party girl who both share the lead vocals, whilst the rest of the band are an assortment of trendy and energetic boy musicians. Offstage they're relaxed and friendly - the bassist shared lovely stories with me about sweating and being stung by a bee on stage - and this transcends into their live performance. Nomi does some serious bum shaking, the trumpet/trombone players work their synchronised moves and the bass player really does sweat a lot.

So, with all this visual pleasure to keep your eyes entertained it's even better when they bang out songs lie 'You Belong' and 'Blind'. There's something about live brass instruments in a club environment that makes me do a little sex wee - and the way they have mixed this with their modern disco sound is what I really like about Hercules & Love Affair.

The crowd were a mix of young gay boys (reaching as far as humanly possible over the stage to touch either Nomi or Kim Ann), old drama queens, straight up and down lads and clear-lensed cool kids. About as mixed as you can get really, which makes for a really relaxed and fun filled gig - bar having to stand next to a few oddly matched horny students sucking on each others faces.

The night was topped off with the added bonus of being able to travel back home by BOAT whilst chowing down on an S&M (Sausage & Mash, not Sado-Masochism) buttie. All together a thoroughly enjoyable evening. Fresh.

Visual Pleasure by Dan Wilton

Review written for 'Sup

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