Live Review

Casiokids & Yacht, Manchester Deaf Institute

What is it about Scandinavia? Is it something they put in the water? Is it the weather?

What is it about Scandinavia? Is it something they put in the water? Is it the weather? Whatever it is, the area seems to have it’s own little bubble of bliss that acts as a kind of incubator for truly beautiful music, all packed with it’s own kind of warmth. It plays host to some of the most exciting artists in the world at the moment, from Múm to Sigur Rós to the ever unpredictable Bjork. Lesser known artists such as I’m From Barcelona still fill their work with an eerie warmth that only Scandinavia seems to be able to foster. Historically, even in music that’s unashamedly pop they manage to outstrip the rest of the world. They’ve got Abba. Who’ve did the UK have? Bucks bloody Fizz.

Now, it’d be ridiculous to say that the area doesn’t host it’s fair share of boring artists, and it’s probably that if you looked with any kind of vigour you’d be able to find their own David Gray hoping about, but when a band as brilliant as Casiokids pop into town, it’s probably best to forget that. On the last night of their UK tour, the band take to the stage of the Deaf Institute with their keyboards and plastic toy animals and leave with the audience in rapture.

It can be difficult for a band to create a party atmosphere at times, but Casiokids do it with aplomb. That the venue is mostly filled must help, and the hugely talented Yacht playing beforehand certainly aids things - however, it takes more than that to get the kids of Manchester moving. The fact is that, when performed, the band’s songs are simply made to be moved to - it’s an almost unstoppable urge to sway your body in time to their cute, plonking electric-piano riffs that starts with the bending of your knees and ends up with your arms in the air. It’s a joy to behold, and the band clearly feel the same.

On stage, they look at home, constantly swapping instruments and positions when not conducting the crowd. To say that there’s a playful element to their music would be a massive understatement - each song is mischievous and exciting, bathed in the dance-indie-pop that got Foals their name, only with more affection than the quintet have ever achieved. Their final song, a 5 minute instrumental breakdown, caps off a magical evening for all involved, and the prolonged applause from the audience seems scant for the performance. They’re bold, clinky and irrepressibly Scandinavian. Come back soon, Casiokids.

Photos: Miriam Baynes

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