Fistful Of Fandango 2009: day three
United Kingdom | 17 September 2009
It's prime time Friday night and all the kids are out in force for day three of the Club Fandango Festival at 229.
Outside the doors a sea of overexited scenesters can be observed quaffing their cutters choice rolleys whilst vehemently debating the relevance of the Mercury Prize to a rousing chorus of, ‘who the fuck is Speech Debelle anyway?’ Will it come to blows – we live in hope.
It's 8pm and inside the cavernous venue, a largish crowd has already gathered highlighting just how popular the Fandango brand has become. Kicking things off on the main stage are the much-hyped 12 Dirty Bullets much to the delight of the football crowd that has assembled at the front. They walk on stage with a confident swagger and open up with a Libertines-esque barrage of riffs and vocals – this is a good thing. Instantly engaging the crowd with their anthemic choruses it’s clear that this is a band we will be seeing a lot more of. In a time where every other band seems to rely on the synth/drum machine formula, it’s refreshing to hear an act that can make a crowd dance without relying on pre-programmed electronics – great stuff.
After a quick trip to the bar we shimmy over to Room 2 to check out Wild Palms. Formerly known as The Ex-Lion Tamers, Wild Palms offer up a mesmerising post punk wash of guitars and brooding vocals. This is a band that is not afraid of innovation and whilst influences from the likes of White Denim and These New Puritans are apparent they have managed to sculpt their own sound, which translates well onstage. Back to the main arena and next up are long-haired bearded types Goldheart Assembly. Having been compared to Fleet Foxes in pretty much all of their reviews the expectant crowd seems thoroughly non-plussed as they drone there way through a tedious set of faux-Americana and pomp.
Lucky for us though, Flash Guns offer a raucous reprieve. Lead singer Sam Felix Johnston cavorts round the stage like a recently uncaged animal as they hammer out a riotous set of indie-pop that has the packed room begging for more. After catching our breath it’s time for headliners Pete and the Pirates to show us what they’re made of on the main stage. As soon as they come on the place erupts and you can see why. There is certain boyish charm to them that has no pretence. They offer up an engaging set of shimmering pop that leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy inside.
The clock chimes midnight, the carriages await and Fistful of Fandango re-affirms itself as one of the top indoor festivals around.
By Nick Danger.
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