Review: Tignes / Neon Friction / Imogen’s Kiss @ The Sunflower Lounge by @JeffStuka


**Please note, the views expressed in the below review are those of Jeff Stuka and do not necessarily represent the views of Blue Whale Studios**

Tignes, Neon Friction, Imogen’s Kiss
The Sunflower Lounge
30th April 2010

Playing the oversize living room that is an empty downstairs at the Sunflower Lounge, I imagine could be a bit of a bummer. I know it was a bummer sitting there thinking “£5 for this?” Certainly, both Imogen’s Kiss and Neon Friction struggled to overcome the yawning chasm where an audience should be.

I must stress here that I’m not criticising the bands. Yes, Imogen’s Kiss weren’t the most original three piece I’ve heard, havering to Weezer and Fountains of Wayne, but they were competent, the songs were not unlistenable and they seemed a likeable bunch if a little staid for my tastes. Yes, pretty much the same could be said about Neon Friction, but changing the comparisons to Elbow, Doves and maybe Six By Seven.

But, it’s not their fault that there were barely enough people in to fill a Smart Car. It’s not their fault that the sound mix had as much balance as a drunk nun on stilts. It’s not their fault that I was there to see it. And in fairness to both bands, I’m not going to criticise their performances because they still got up their and did their stuff despite shit sound and a virtually empty room.

Tignes (pronounced Teens) suffered less from the poor sound having more band members to thwok up the noise bulk, though in no way were they immune. They did have the added bonus of being a shithot bunch of excitable buggers, hammering cowbells, chucking guitars around and generally pissing our ears full of eclectic, dynamic tunes that had me thinking Beta Band meets Sigur Ros meets Vampire Weekend whilst keeping one tit in the No-Fo* bra.

Christ knows how much of my brain they’ll fuck out of my head when I see them on a decent sound rig. Sadly though, tonight sees too few people paying too much money to see a band who, on the basis of this performance, should be watched by many.

*No-Fo = Northfield Scene: a sound exemplified by bands such as Tantrums, Scarlet Harlots and (silver) souvenirs who hail from the Northfield area of Birmingham. Check ’em out.

Jeff Stuka

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