Celebrating the slightly belated 10th anniversary of his debut self-titled album, Darwin Deez and his band brought their show to Bristol’s Thekla to play to a sold out boat.
The show was opened by Youth Sector, a 5-piece from Brighton. These young lads came onto the stage well dressed and well coordinated, all with stylish open button suits. Seeing them come on stage, I don’t know what I was expecting, but I was fully blown away. From the off, these boys threw all their energy into the set, culminating an indie-pop-funk sound, which quickly got the crowd on side.
As a band, these guys clearly got on well together, not only in matching outfits and energy, but in general presence and enjoyment, it was clear this was another band that just got on well together. You can tell these guys are mates for life.
Throughout the set, Darwin and greg periodically came out to sing and dance along to some of the songs, and got the crowd up and dancing as well. When the main act loves the support band this much, you know it’s been a good choice of show opener.
And then it was onto the main act of the night. After a quick change around, Darwin first came onto stage alone, with a backing track playing, before the rest of the band joined. I was expecting them all to pick up their relative instruments, but instead they launched into a finely choreographed dance routine. Unexpected but certainly nothing less than amazing.
Celebrating the 10th anniversary of their debut album, it was only right that it was played through in full. Although a little less lively than Youth Sector, the crowd were still having a great time, albeit with slightly less in your face dance moves and slightly more singing along.
As an album and as a live set, there was a very dreamy feel to the night, with the stage backing resembling the stars, and twinned with opening song Constellations, this was one night almost under the skies.
The end of each song was met with rounds of applause and cheers from the whole boat, the music only broken up by the occasional dance break from the band.
As Darwin said, it really did help break up the show and made them a cut above the other bands that have graced that stage. Also it was an absolute joy to watch.
After playing the album in full, the band played a couple of other songs, but sadly before this I had to dip out of the show and start work. However I was assured it was a great show and the closer was met with more thunderous applause, and that everyone there had a great time.
As always, a massive thanks to the crew on board Thekla, as well as all the bands, staff, security and crew for making it a brilliant show.
Tickets to the last few shows of this tour can be found here.
Review and photos by Ted Stargatt for TrueStyleMusic