I had heard the music of Red Spektor thanks to an introduction on Facebook and thought they had a rich, funky, groove laden feel with a multi-dimensional aspect that was reminiscent of Crobot, Scorpion Child, Buffalo Summer etc. so I was really wanting to see them play live to see if they could live up to the expectation that had been created. The band is made up of John Scane on Guitar and Vocals, Daz Bowen on Drums and Rob Farrell on Bass.
The Shed in Leicester is a really cool venue, which has recently been refurbished and this was my first time here. There is a decent sized stage with a good bar and plenty of space to see the band.
The Rigger is an equally cool venue with a great feel, funky sayings on the wall and a raised area at the back by the sound desk. Again, there are plenty of places to watch the band from.
I am not going to apologise but this will be a pretty emotional review as you know that all is right with the universe when you feel your feet move and can do nothing to stop them, your eyes close and you become lost in the music, all of this plus an ear to ear grin …. this is what great music feels like to me.
The sets were fairly similar on both nights and in each case they came on to Cosmonaut which is a powerful, multi tempo track. The first thing that hit me, right between the eyes is that this is a band who play phenomenally well. They have been playing together for a while now and are so in synch that they can go off into jams and they know when it is time to knuckle down, belt up and get on with the track.
Rob plays bass like a lead guitar which adds so much depth of texture to the songs, Daz is a great drummer, doing so much more than keeping the band in time, the drumming is creative and elegant and does much to enhance the overall experience. At the Rigger John’s voice was struggling towards the end but he still gave the set everything he had, even coming back on for an encore.
There are superb riffs played by John that soar endlessly up, dispersed with moments of light and shade. All members of the band create a mood that essentially draws you and doesn’t let go of you until way after the final note has been played.
The whole feel of a Red Spektor gig is what I imagine gigs to be like in the 60’s or 70’s with a slightly ethereal feel, fluidity and space plus funky, groovy tracks that send your soul into outer space. There is very serious playing and intensity but there is heart and passion linking everything together. Dreamy moments are replaced with classic rock riffs and tunes, only to be overturned by a kind of blues based vibe.
The sets were:
The Shed: Cosmonaut, Pagan Queen, Devil’s Keeper, Revol, Hard to Please, Torpedo Head and the encore was Black Moon Rising.
The Rigger: Cosmonaut, Pagan Queen, Devil’s Keeper, Revol, Transcending, Everywhere, Torpedo Head, Black Moon Rising and the encore was Elixar
So, did they live up to my expectations …. yes and far exceeded them! This band, for me, have something really special. They do not believe that they are as good as they are which gives them a humility and passion. This is a band whose music I cannot help but dance along to and, looking round the audiences on both nights, the smiles on peoples faces prove they felt exactly the same. This is a band whose music deserves to be heard live. Go and see them whilst they are still playing in small venues as I think this is a band that could take on the world and win.
Red Spektor: http://www.redspektor.com/
The Shed: https://www.getintheshed.co.uk/
The Rigger: http://www.theriggerrockvenue.co.uk/