"One guy, apparently, was checking the band out with a view to booking them. Yet he stood right at the front (and to my chagrin) directly in front of me, talking away to his mate, his back turned to the stage, cheerfully ignorant of all around him"
Tenuzu No Chiizu and Boy Omega - LVP, Leiden 17/3/06
Before we start the review proper a fact must, (as a kind of civic duty on Inmusic's behalf) be brought to everyone's attention immediately. The LVP as a venue is bloody difficult to find. In fact, it doesn't look like a venue, oh no; rather it looks like a residential block of flats. Indeed, on closer inspection (once inside, after some extremely doubtful knocking and buzzer pressing on our part) it turns out to be a residential block of flats, only one that is renovated to some extent to incorporate a venue. Only the Dutch.... You have been warned.
Anyway, onto the gig.
Once inside the LVP, reveals itself to be a cosy venue, more of a cafe bar truth be told. Still, the beer's cheap and the sound is pretty good. Tenuzu No Chiizu were first on the bill. They are a two piece, piano and guitar, very much in the style of Popol Vuh's Florian Fricke and Danny
The music they produce is somewhat similar too, beautiful precise vignettes that are, in effect, showcases for Aart-Jan Schakenbos's incredible guitar playing. This lad is really something else when he gets going, even within the restrained, piano-led template of TnC's music. Pedals are pressed, strings are bent, his guitar hit once or twice – he runs through the whole gamut of emotions through his playing. Highlight of the set was undeniably 39, which silenced the talking (ah, yes, the talking, we'll comeback to that in a minute) and set up a well-received encore. Check 'em out!
Now, where were we? Oh yes, the talking. Now I am quite aware that a cafe bar is technically not a podium and the proximity of the bar to the stage will always lead to a certain level of noise, but let's be fair, most people wouldn't have come to the LVP tonight if Boy Omega weren't playing. Which, of course leads me to the question of why come to a gig if you are going to spend it talking, especially if you are a couple of feet from the stage? One guy, apparently, was checking the band out with a view to booking them. Yet he stood right at the front (and to my chagrin) directly in front of me, talking away to his mate, his back turned to the stage, cheerfully ignorant of all around him.
All of which, of course meant that Boy Omega's music, frail and emotional as it is (they are, for your information, the typically eclectically instrumented EMO band) was literally swamped by the crowd noise. A fact which, of course, made it damned difficult for me to get a true appreciation of the music they played. From what I could gather, they sounded okay, if instantly a categorical EMO band, violins, frail vocals with lyrics of love and loss, fringes, tight jeans and shoe gazing stances... the usual thing. Still they had enough in them to tell the audience to shut up a couple of times – fair play to them for that. To say that rebuke was one of the highlights of the night should give some indication of just how annoying the crowd were and just how annoyed I was with them; so much so that I spent most of the gig looking round angrily at this smug bunch. Hell, I got so annoyed I even bought the band a beer halfway through their set, leaping on stage in an act of drunken, bellicose camaraderie. Then I just thought sod it, I'll get ridiculously drunk, which I did. The rest of the evening can have a veil safely drawn over it.
In conclusion, I feel that this review needs a moral ending, which is, be warned. The LVP is lovely, but don't expect to hear the band.
Words: Richard Foster.