Youth Lagoon, Sures, Bearhug @ Factory Theatre, Sydney (28/07/2012)

First up on stage are Bearhug, their sound is as warm and soothing as their name suggests. The fuzzy lo-fi guitar rifts waft between the plumes of smoke being pumped out of the smoke machine. They nervously chat between songs, not sure what to say other then request smoke machine be cranked up higher. Despite their bumbling banter, the band are relaxed and play a cracking set, highlights include Snow Leopard and Fiery Stars.

Sures step up next. They have been rattling up a buzz in recent months and seem to be constantly touring. They sound like the Beach Boys had their frisky way with the Smashing Pumpkins. Poseidon showcases their tight songwriting over relaxing washed out reverb. The delicate falsetto in the song The Sun brings a sense of summer to the bitterly cold winter night.

The small but enthused crowd hustles closer to the stage. A hush settles over the room in anticipation of Youth Lagoon’s set of wispy guitar and ethereal electronica. Despite only having one album they don’t manage to play their full repertoire, as Trevor Powers is incredibly chatty. The beanie clad singer bounces on his stool as he excitedly chats to the crowd ‘you’re all so respectful!’ he yells before egging everyone to make noise, ask questions and even give negative reviews. One punter gets into the swing of things and heckles ‘Youth Lagoon sucks’ he is quickly silenced by the writhing looks thrown in his direction. The crowd is smitten by Powers’ and his boyish charms, so stay in good humor when technical glitches halt the set for five minutes.

The ethereal atmosphere evoked on the album is somewhat lacking during the set due to poor sound control. The heavily distorted bass thunders through the keys and a tinny resonance echoes through the mike. However that doesn’t matter as it Power’s is such a delight. We roll out of the Factory feeling sublime from the dreamy lo-fi lineup.