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Thursday, 15 March 2012

Summer Camp

Summer Camp brought the sounds of Condale to The Rainbow in Birmingham last night for a riot of Ferris-Bueller-leading-the-parade proportions.

Young duo Elizabeth Sankey and Jeremy Warmsley blasted their way through a host of songs from their debut album Welcome To Condale, as well as unveiling two new songs from a forthcoming ep.

I’ve been dying to see them since I first heard Better Off Without You, comfortably one of the best songs of recent times, in mid 2011 and this grew with the release of their excellent debut on Halloween.

With touring drummer Will in tow, they ran through a raw and energetic set of indie-pop with a retro tinge, complemented perfectly by a reel of iconic film moments playing in the background, from Condale-appropriate classics such as Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, The Breakfast Club, Footloose and Dirty Dancing, to Elvis.

The mythology they have created through their obsession with an 80s aesthetic, sustained in their live show as well, is what makes them a special band. Add to that that they are a great live band too. Everything is louder and raunchier, but polite enough to include an allotted chat break in the middle.

Elizabeth is a charismatic chameleon on stage, flitting between butter-wouldn’t-melt, dancing like the mic is her hairbrush and she’s back in her bedroom, and delivering acidic lines with looks that could kill and smacking down any overzealous shouts. Jeremy bounces along next to her, playing a variety of instruments and bringing the noise.

That said, amongst numerous highlights were the two unplugged numbers, a brave move with a noisy crowd containing more than one drunken idiot. Jeremy and Elizabeth sang latest single Losing My Mind while wandering through the crowd and closed with a heartfelt cover of Fleetwood Mac’s Everywhere. The vast majority of the crowd enjoyed it silently and appreciated the chance to hear them stripped down. See a similar performance from a previous gig below.

The gig was only the second of the current tour but will be hard to top. To find out more about the rest of their tour and for drawings and recipes courtesy of Elizabeth, check out their blog here.

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