Just as Ronseal Quick Drying Woodstain does exactly what it says on the tin, the presence of the two protagonists of Slow Club on the front cover of their debut album Yeah So implies that two people will take to the stage when they perform. The days of Slow Club packing out the Luminaire and Cargo as a twosome are, however, behind Charles Watson and Rebecca Taylor who enlisted the backup of an additional drummer and Jeremy Warmsley of Summer Camp to kick off their largest UK show as headliners in front of the crowd at Koko.
The effect was to ramp up the tempo from the off, starting with faster numbers such as ‘Our most Brilliant Friends’ and ‘Giving up on Love’ before their support left the stage leaving the toothsome twosome (hopefully that compliment will alleviate the effects of being called a “pair of fat, spoilt adult-toddlers playing at life” on Youtube) to strum and drum whilst harmonising on songs that are, on one occasion as lazy as a wistful summer, then on another barnstorming and full of raucous energy.
Although the silence when Rebecca sang the dirge ‘Sorry about the Doom’ was that of breath held in respectful awe of her heartfelt lament, it would be ridiculous to paint Slow Club as downbeat in spite of the fact that their song titles are generally less than optimistic. The duo put any such worries to rest by ramming their collective tongue firmly in cheek on a regular basis with wide eyed lyrics and jokes between tracks boasting a cringe factor any Dad would be proud of:
“What did the cheese say to itself when it looked in mirror? Halloumi…”
– Rebecca Taylor, June 2010
Throughout the show, Slow Club mixed new tracks in with the old and if we didn’t like it then it was “just tough” according to Rebecca. Luckily the unfamiliar material was as solid as the old favourites, especially ‘Gold Mountain’, played as an encore to cheers played down by Charles who seemed confused at the response to an as yet unreleased track.
If there was any complaint it would be that at times the set felt rushed, as the nervous energy that ran through the performance kept things moving without pause for breath. The encore came after barely enough time to register more than a peek-a-boo as they darted off and back again, making it even more of a pointless ritual than usual. Hopefully Slow Club can continue to inject a bit of fun into their live performances as well as their recorded work, regardless of the size of venue they play, and the slight air of embarrassment at all the fuss won’t hamper any progression as their fan base continues to grow.
Words: Chris Gent