Bombay Bicycle Club, Megastick Fanfare @ The Metro Theatre, Sydney (29/3/12)
Sydney band Megastick Fanfare were the support act for Bombay Bicycle Club and looked excited to be opening for them. If only their enthusiasm could have improved the sound in their set. There’s a bit of feedback from an amp early on, the mix doesn’t do the number of instruments on stage any justice and it’s impossible to tell if the lead singer is singing any lyrics, or just yelling to be heard over the drums.
It’s not until the fourth song that any lyrics can be understood and once the problems were fixed, the band started to enjoy themselves and relax. Megastick Fanfare have a unique sound and style, incorporating barking noises into a song is one example, and it’s a shame their set was almost ruined by disappointing sound.
The Metro is completely full – mainly of young girls in shorts – and the all ages aspect of this gig is painfully obvious when you look down at the dance floor. Bombay Bicycle Club arrive on stage to screams and cheers and open with How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep.
The set moves on nicely, with the band concentrating on songs from their latest album A Different Kind of Fix. There isn’t any real standout in the first half of the set, the band keeps their energy levels high and lead singer Jack Steadman keeps the crowd pleased by encouraging singalongs at every chance.
In fact, in songs Cancel On Me and Always Like This the crowd takes over and drowns the band out more than once, until Steadman holds the microphone out to the first few rows so they can sing: “I’m not whole, I’m not whole”. The amount of energy in the crowd towards the end is probably to do with this being an all ages gig and the number of cameras and iPhones in the air at any given time is another indication of this.
The band are smart and leave their biggest hit Shuffle until the encore and the crowd explodes into pogo-dancing, camera-extending, hand-waving delight. It’s not everyone’s idea of a “hit” though, two people next to me start to argue about the emotion or lack thereof coming from Steadman as he plays. I overhear a comment about his being a ‘General Pants ad song’ but this opinion clearly isn’t shared by others in the room singing the chorus back to the band and jumping up and down screaming.
Bombay Bicycle Club finish their set on a more energetic note with What If and leave a satisfied and sweaty crowd behind.