Sunday, 25 January 2009

Kill 'Em All @ Fabric 23/1/09 featuring We Have Band + Yuksek + Brodinski

Kill ‘Em All is the club-night cum pet-project of DJs-turned-band Filthy Dukes. Olly and Tim of the ’Dukes have been attracting some of the biggest names in electro to their resident Fabric nights for five years now, including Erol Alkan, Simian Mobile Disco, Justice and Chemical Brothers. Tonight, they showcase buzz-trio We Have Band’s Can inspired take on DIY electro-pop, followed by a heavy slice of some of the dirtiest bass available, courtesy of the beautiful Yuksek, and fellow Frenchman Brodinski – a line up easy on the eye if nothing else.

There’s no dallying with subtlety where We Have Band are concerned, especially crowd-density is considered in Fabric’s Room Two tonight. Considering one of them had never been on a stage five months ago and they’re all pretty new to the whole band thing, We Have Band aren’t doing half bad. The three-piece was conceived when all three members took redundancy from EMI, trading major-label anonymity for a speedy ascendancy in the ranks of a busy British electro scene. Now the trio are taking a bite at the music industry from a different angle and this time they’re leaving teeth marks.

Their sound is borne of a savvy, slick musicality that manipulates digital instrumentation as krautrock acts like Can did with the band sound in the seventies. They squeeze keys and electro beats all over fat, repetitious bass lines, overlaid with a triple vocal that sets them apart from their solo vocal contemporaries. Thomas and Dede WP, the married couple in the band, seem to rely heavily on the on-stage persona of the magnetic, buzz-cut sporting Darren, who grins his way through the whole set. If smiles were karma, Darren’s enthusiasm would help to offset Dede and Thomas’s stony, stylised vacancy, but as it is the pair of them seem slightly caught in the headlights of a rowdy audience who have abandoned all shyness at the door, and just want to dance.

Dede is pretty but cold-faced, centre stage, robotically hitting a tambourine and supplying vocals that verge on a cat-like yawp, especially in the band’s first single, ‘Oh!’. She comes off better in the slightly less obvious ‘Can You Hear It In The Cans’. Their set doesn’t overwhelm, but for a breaking act they certainly seem to be pushing all the right buttons and making all the right friends. They close with a cover of Pet Shop Boys’ ‘West End Girls’, in a tongue in cheek eighties-revivalist twist that sets the floor pulsing.
The rest of the evening is left to veteran DJs Yuksek and Brodinski. Both impossibly handsome Frenchmen, their order of ceremonies for the evening splits the crowd fairly swiftly. Yuksek mashes up heavy bass with French electro-house, standing centre stage to execute the vocals from tracks from his 2008 EP ‘Tonight’ amongst other electro favourites.

Meanwhile in the main room Brodinski reveals minimalist preoccupations from his caged booth at the back. He does away with the instant gratification of his bass-heavy electro contemporaries in favour of a good hour of hypnotic and addictive techno, before breaking into mixes of everything from LCD Soundsystem to Metronomy. Between them, it becomes quickly apparent that the UK has some catching up to do where dance music is concerned. But if in the meantime we get to learn a few tricks from two of France’s finest, there are sure to be no complaints.

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