One of my favourite bands over the past 18 months Phobophobes headline at the Iconic 100 Club in support of the recently released album “Miniature world”. Lost count of the number of times I have seen them but almost in double figures I would guess.
A compere had been employed in the shape of Thick Richard. From Manchester (I think) comparisons with John Cooper Clark were unavoidable. Didn’t have the same back combed hair but lyrically and visually there were many similarities. A poet for a new generation it was all good ,although due to the stage times backing up a bit he did have to fight to be heard at points.
Support came from “The Starlight Magic Hour”. From Manchester they seem to have been adopted by the SW London music scene. Obvious to see why. They have youth on their side and play music that fits with the current trend for quite profound lyrical content with a tinge of politics. The vocalist puts heart and soul into his performance which is a challenge I always think if you are on first . Amongst the songs there are some catchy tunes and choruses. I need to listen a bit more to these guys but definitely a growing band and got real potential on the alternative circuit. would check them out before they get too big.
Second support provided by “Yowl” who are more traditional rockers who I’ve seen before supporting “LIFE”. Audience was filling by now and the floor was getting like a skating rink due to beer spillage. They are good journeymen who have a muscular sound but don’t really have a gimmick , in a music scene which needs bands to have a bit of theatrical edge to stand out.
Phobophobes were on at 9.40 and played about 50 minute set. They are getting to a point where the gaps in all the songs are being filled now . What I mean by that is that the original fairly stripped back songs would sound fairly thin in comparison to how they sound now live and on the album. I raise this issue because it a bit of a bugbear of mine. I completely appreciate that bands get bored playing the same songs but re-arrangement can often reduce the original tracks appeal. “Child Star ” for example lost the signature percussion for a much fuller sound.A question on tracks chosen was the inclusion of “Make a Human” which was the first song of theirs I heard (but it’s not on the album?).
However, these slightly critical observations, didn’t detract from the overall performance which sees the guys more confident and assured than ever and leaving me ready for the next outing , which I think is possibly mid-April. Power to the Phobophobes