Being included in the BBC’s ‘Sound of 2012’ poll, it was no surprise that this Dry The River show was a sell out. This band has been so hyped recently that they are amongst GQ magazine’s ‘100 Best Things in the World’: now that’s some mighty expectation you’re going to be feeling when attending one of their gigs. I had previously seen DTR supporting Bombay Bicycle Club in a far larger venue, so I was eagerly anticipating seeing them in a more intimate space which I hoped would be perfect for their folk rock style.
The audience was a diverse lot, and one of the few times I’d seen some of the pension brigade enter Clwb Ifor Bach. The lights dimmed and a song started to play on the PA. To my horror, I realised it was Michael Jackson’s ‘Will You Be There’. I stood there bemused whilst the whole song played. I didn’t get it. I even Googled why on earth this would happen, and it just came to the conclusion that DTR are big fans. The band took to the stage and without word of an introduction, the harmonies began leading into their first song ‘No Rest’. Peter Liddle’s vocals were captivating and the lyrics were stunning; this was indeed a great way to kick off the show. The band then began to utter their first words of the evening, including some nipple banter – it was cold, there were nipples, you can imagine the hilarity.
Continuing on to play the rest of their first album, I noticed the crowd get a little whoopy when a Bombay Bicycle style riff occurred, clearly showing the Bombay Bicycle Club tour had gained them some following mixed in with the GQ readers and old men. The crowd reached their peak of excitement with some cheers when ‘New Ceremony’ started, and this was by far my favourite song of the set, beautifully performed and engaging.
DTR had decided they were going to perform ‘Weights and Measures’ with no microphones, their vocals floated softly amongst the audience. This was a nice touch, but sadly it seemed some interest had begun to waiver and you could hear some people in the back having a nice chat about where they would be taking their Sunday stroll this week.
To end the show, DTR confessed they didn’t see the point in walking off and on again to do an encore, so just announced that this was not going to happen and they would be cracking on with their encore songs, of which there were three. A little much for an encore, but the audience wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. JT