Unsurprisingly, Hackney is buzzing with the sound of music as the second edition of Mirrors gets ready to kick off. Following on from last year’s inaugural Halloween bash, 2016’s leg of the event promises to be bigger – quite literally, with more venues taking part this year – and more jam-packed full of bands.
By the time that Babeheaven take to the stage, Oslo is packed out. Led by the mesmerising vocals of Nancy Anderson, the band waste little time in casting a hazy spell upon the crowd. Their trip-hop inflected efforts are both delicate and bold – with their gorgeous ‘Heaven’ getting an early airing - and they provide a rather atmospheric start to a night that’s guaranteed to get much more chaotic.
Glittering brilliantly, the Moth Club - a new addition to Mirrors’ list of venues for this year’s event, and DIY’s own hub for the evening - is another treasure trove of music tonight. Drawing to the close of their first UK tour, Hoops are a brilliant tangle of lazy summer pop and shimmering guitars that light up the room on a cold London evening. Meanwhile, back over the road at Oslo, there’s an honest brilliance to the tales of normal life that Martha tell that’s infectious. The Pity Me pop punks may be rough around the edges, but therein lies their charm; tracks like ‘Precarious (Supermarket Song)’ – ‘I’m like an unexpected item in your bagging area’ is still an incredible lyric - are both relatable and anthemic in their own measure, making their set one of the stand-outs of today.
There’s a real buzz around Miya Folick right now, and from her appearance at the Moth Club this evening, it’s easy to see why. There are few airs and graces to the singer, who gleefully looks around at the glitter-covered walls on the venue, while warbling an impromptu rendition of The Lion King’s infamous ‘The Lion Sleeps Tonight’. Fun, insatiable and infectious, her set proves her as a real star in the making.
After an introduction from the scuzzed-up stylings of Cherry Glazerr, Oslo’s main attraction are as brilliant as expected. Fucked Up have always had a reputation for their incendiary live shows and their set in the capital tonight is no different. Ripping headfirst into their debut album ‘Hidden World’ – their few UK shows have included a full run-through of the record - it takes little time for pits to break out throughout the packed room, thanks to the band’s furious leader Damian Abraham. While their debut may be celebrating its tenth birthday this year, it’s lost none of its original punch and their headlining slot is as potent and powerful as ever.
In almost complete contrast, Bat For Lashes’ Natasha Khan is gearing up to close Mirrors over at St. John-at-Hackney Church. While Khan is no stranger to playing in churches – after her ‘The Bride’ shows across the UK earlier this year - tonight’s setting feels somewhat more grandiose than her previous festival spots this summer. Emerging on stage in her red wedding dress with a black lace veil, she still thrives on the dramatics of her newest record and its themes. Haunting and gorgeous, her set delves into cuts from previous albums too - with a spine-tingly rendition of ‘Laura’ hushing the crowd - while offering up a striking conclusion to a brilliant day.
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