An eclectic show with influences from Northern Africa.
Shoreditch has long-hosted a quirky and vibrant scene for new music in all its forms and Cargo (a disused railway yard-turned bar), is yet another example of the hipster scheme. The venue itself runs wild with the feeling of the railroad, with old ventilation pipes running though the bar and original limestone brick work as its wallpaper. The low arches make for a very atmospheric sound with acoustics allowing the bass to echo back and forth like a metronome, creating a distortion to the music unequivocal to other venues.
The opening bands stir the crowds attention with long melodic sounds from Mono Club and Mowbeck. As openers, their sets are affirming and persuasive. Mowbeck push through, announcing themselves with powerful vocals and percussion which emphasise their aspiration and passion. Both acts leave the crowd feeling melodic and at peace.
Natives burst out on to the stage, ready to take over the world with up-beat indie pop melodies that have the sort of vibrance that gets even the most timid of people moving. The band’s retreat to the northern territories of Africa comes across in their music, like firecrackers of sound in the cavernous and atmospheric venue.
Morocco has had a huge impact on this band, bringing in sounds from a land with a culture very different from their own, exploring the beauty of its freedom. The band had a way of transcending from the peak of love to the cagey, dark and almost unwanted taint of loneliness in beats that really show tones of hysteria within each chord.
Some folds of their music exude strong electronic interludes which hypnotise the audience into a transitional robotic sway, not dissimilar to styles of The Naked and Famous, Friendly Fires or MGMT.
In their music, they exhibit all of the feelings that they have felt and endured throughout their two-year break. They appear strong, and unified.
I had time to catch up with the band after the show:
You spent a long time away between albums perfecting your sound, notably in Morocco. Did you go there with the intention for that country to have such an effect on your music?
It was a little of both. Our rule when we started making this album was that we just wanted to make music that would make us happy and get us excited. It wasn’t about what others would think or success, so in that regard we said lets try and make some music influenced by Africa. We definitely love music from all over the world, and based our sound around Morocco because we wanted to experience their culture. It wasn’t a case that we wanted to make African music, more that we loved how we were influenced by our time there and wanted to show that in our music.
It’s very hard these days to commit yourself to a sound that hasn’t in some way been done before and normally this derives from mentors in the industry, are there many bands you would compare yourself to?
Nothing consciously. It wasn’t as if we sat down and said lets try and sound like this, but because we were so free with the writing all of our influences up to this point came out in the writing process. Michael Jackson, we think, really comes through in some of the rhythm in the album. I think all our stuff is laden with influence but not necessarily purposely.
Your new music has already had huge success in a modest amount of time, with 150k views as of now on Youtube for ‘Stop the Rain’. Where do you see yourselves a year from now?
What?! Wow, that’s mad, we didn’t know that to be honest. The thing is it goes back to that same rule as long as the 4 or 5 of us are happy and what we are doing pleases us then we are going to do it. So as long as we keep doing that and people like it, then that’s amazing.
This band brought everything they have felt, heard, lived and loved to their performance, wherever they see themselves a year from now you can guarantee we’ll be there to support.