Claire Elshaw continues our search for the stars of 2011 by checking out Chapel Club in Liverpool.
The vast array of guitar pedals on the Mojo stage in Liverpool look like the controls of a space ship. All aboard the SS Chapel Club.
The Captain, small in stature, but big in voice is Lewis Bowman. His onstage shipmates are a rag tag bunch. The drummer looks like a choir boy, one guitarist like an escaped fashion model and the other a gangly mental patient, complete with cardigan. It’s the bass player who looks the most at home in a band, but even he is too fresh faced to be truly rock.
However, as the opening strains of ‘Fine Lights’ fill the air, it’s all about the musical journey. ‘O Maybe I’ lifts the audience and ‘Roads’, a new tune on its live UK debut, gives them the chance to sing along, proud of the fact they’ve done their homework.
Throughout, the be-cardiganed guitarist constantly bobs up and down, leaving those at the front fearing he may smash his head straight into the stage. The rest of the band does the vaguely dignified indie shift, moving slowly from foot-to-foot in time with the beat.
As ‘Blind’ and ‘Surfacing’ ring out, the crowd really gets into it. They’ve been waiting a long time to see these guys. They are the sixth band on the line up this evening and it’s nearly midnight by the time they strike up the first chords. But the group doesn’t turn into a pumpkin as the clock reveals the start of a new day, they just get better.
They appreciate the audience’s commitment as well with Bowman stating: “Thank you for staying out so late to check us out.” The hoard enjoy the sentiment and carry on cheering as a fan is hoisted up on his mate’s shoulders, proving that even though the venue is not that big this is a massive night out for them. The only sign of trouble is when a smell of smoke starts to drift into the room. Some people at the back lighting their napkins.
Just before the over excitement leads to the venue burning down, Chapel Club head off, leaving one of the guitar pedals to do its stuff and everyone heads of into the night. This is just the start for the group, but expect great indie to be back in 2011.