Image by Christopher Wilson
While Ben Bridwell’s Charleston-by-way-of-Seattle rockers may not have yet broken the back of their ‘nice indie rock’ reputation with the release of their fifth record, they’ll certainly not lose any fans by treading their well-worn path of pessimistic love songs. Band Of Horses play Newcastle’s O2 Academy on Friday 17th February, currently peddling last year’s punctuation-troubling album Why Are You OK (produced by Grandaddy’s Jason Lytle), which continues to offer up their perfectly lovely indie rock gems.
It’s easy to see why lead single Casual Party became a chart-bothering anthem in the US, replete with a nagging guitar line and sing-along chorus: it’s epic enough to be catchy but manages to retain the band’s hummable quirkiness (particularly evident in the oddball video featuring some pretty interesting party costumes…). In A Drawer features backing vocals from alt. rock royalty J Mascis of Dinosaur Jr and is an altogether more chilled affair, with programmed percussion and a pleasingly lo-fi style. With a growing catalogue including favourites like The Funeral, Is There a Ghost and Nobody’s Gonna Love You, there’s no shortage of swooning songs for the band to draw from live. Not a gig full of surprises then, but a lovely night nonetheless.