Sunday, 12 November 2017

LIVE: Low Island & Friends at Corsica Studios (8/11/17)

"We don't usually do an encore, but this is a special occasion." The truest words ever spoken, which were met with raucous applause at the first of Low Island's back to back sold out shows at Corsica Studios on Wednesday. It's been just over a year since the band put out their first track Anywhere, which was at the time celebrated with a sold out show at Sebright Arms. Fast forward to this April and a sold out night at Electrowerkz, and you start to see the impressive trajectory the band have taken in such a short space of time. With a couple of EPs released along the way and sets at various festivals this Summer (including The Great Escape where I finally caught them live), this all built up to the Low Island and Friends tour.

Doing just what it says on the tin the tour has been an opportunity for the band to collaborate with various creatives in the towns that they've been visiting - and for the lucky London crowd on Wednesday evening, this meant not only two support bands (Ilk and Our Mother) but two unique performance pieces. The band wrote that "working with people from across the artistic spectrum for this tour has been an incredibly fun and eye-opening experience for us. For the Corsica Studios shows next week, we've collaborated with the designer Shawn Soh, movement director Sara Green and dancers Hae Yon Lim, Aishwarya Raut, Chloe Brazinskas and Sara Kaspersen on a piece that explores the difficulties of growing up in the digital age. There's also going to be a fantastic performance art piece called 'Outburst', devised by Gary Stevens." The different performances, some of which took place within the crowd, kept us on our toes and prepared us for what was to come!

Moments after taking to the stage and beginning their first track, the volume of the bass caused a power cut. As technical difficulties go, it's pretty rock and roll. After a lot of switching on and off again all was sorted, and the band started the first song from the beginning as if nothing had happened - I'm not sure anyone would have any complaints about hearing the first half of the song again! They quickly got into the swing of things, delivering a set full of incredible tunes that make even the worst dancers among us want to bust out some moves. They treated us to tunes from the In This Room EP including the brilliant tracks That Kind Of Love, Holding It Down, as well as recent single The Lines, and they even let us in on some entirely new tunes which got just as fantastic a reception from the audience. Throughout the set it was clear just how happy  the band were to be playing for us, and how grateful and surprised they were that we were all there, which always makes for a lovely atmosphere at a show! As well as being pretty wonderful musically, they're four lovely chaps who deserve all the superb opportunities which will continue to be created for them - since the show, they've been announced as BBC Introducing in Oxford's 'Act of the Year 2017' - an amazing achievement!

Low Island have just announced an Oxford headline show at The Cellar for local promoters Future Perfect on 27th Jan - find all the info and ticket links here!

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