Live Review

Oui Love Presents: Team Ghost & Anoraak, CAMP, London

Anoraak have an incredibly hard act to follow.

Back when I was but a slip of a girl, my darling father spent some time trying to convince me that French music was not, as I firmly ascertained, a bit rubbish, but in fact, very cool indeed. His argument was solely based around our fear of language, that, unlike us Brits, the French are not afraid to listen to records in a something other than their mother tongue. However, when it came down to it, the French lost the argument, courtesy of their inexplicable obsession for Johnny Hallyday, who even as a young girl with occasionally dubious taste in music, even I knew was totally shit.

In the intervening years, when our Gallic cousins pumped out Air, Phoenix, Daft Punk and erm… Vanessa Paradis like they’ve always been this chic (as if), it became clear that my father, misguided as he may sometimes be, might actually have a bit of a point. So, when the opportunity arises to see France’s latest exports, Team Ghost and Anoraak, all visions of Hallyday are swiftly tossed aside, in search of something altogether more fantastique.

The last time we attempted to catch up with Team Ghost at the Camden Crawl, the venue had been so rammed to capacity that the only viewing point was literally from the back door. No such problem tonight, there’s even some dancing room at the front for a very strange middle aged lady who looks like she’s possibly had une, non deux, non trois glasses of vin rouge too many. As she does her best to divert our attention from the matter at hand (and believe me, watching a one woman near stage invasion whilst trying to work out if and when she’s likely to vom on you, why, that’s the dictionary definition of “distracting”) Team Ghost seem oblivious and instead are busy creating a veritable cacophony of sound. Blasting through ‘Blood’, ‘Fireworks’ and ‘Somebody’s Watching’, there’s no soothing us into their sound gently, it’s straight into a sonic cathedral of noise and make no mistake.

Signalling the end of each track with a simple ‘thanks guys’, Team Ghost fulfil all of my aural requirements, loud, melodic, beautiful. It’s brilliantly epic, rattling through your ribcage goodness indeed. As they rip through ‘Colours In Time’, we forget to even worry about the state our eardrums are likely to be in tomorrow. And it’s over too soon, too soon indeed. God, I hate it when my father is right.

Feeling satiated already, Anoraak have an incredibly hard act to follow. And bless them, they try, they’re all electro shiny pop and tight tees, fist pumping the air and whipping the teenage girls who’ve appeared at the front, as if by magic, into an absolute frenzy. In all honest, it starts off badly, at one point, a bassline kicks in that appears to have come straight out of Robert Palmer’s ‘Addicted to Love’ – all that’s missing is a few emotionless models swaying in the background. Maybe I’m too old, maybe it’s all a little too Mighty Boosh without the irony, maybe I just don’t get it (because those teenage girls, they sure do).

But it does get better, as they demand that the audience cross the invisible line that they’ve managed to draw halfway across the venue and move closer the stage, you can see the crowd being sneakily suckered in to Anoraak’s electro energy. But after Team Ghost, it’s a bit like being served a pot of yoghurt for desert after a cordon bleu main, it’s a just bit… unsatisfying. It’s just, to these ears, they’re trying too hard, and everyone knows that trying hard isn’t cool. God, I love it when my father is wrong.

Tags: Features

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