Hadouken! at the Electric Ballroom
Hadouken! took to the stage at the Electric Ballroom to euphoric elation from the gathered crowd. They immediately got down to what they do best: combining techno sounds with live rock music, topped off with band leader James Smith’s vocal. They were in town promoting their new album Every Weekend, a compilation of new neo-rave tracks only slightly divergent from the preceding two records.
The crowd swayed, danced and jumped to the pumping distorted beats emanating from the stage, apparently thrilled to see the group live. The band thrived onstage, finding the fine line between being lost in the moment and being competent musicians. The performances started fast and hard, and the crowd reacted in turn. Several mosh pits formed, with people jumping around, flailing and sweating. It was all very exciting for the protagonists.
Sadly, the music didn’t have quite the sincerity or passion of the moshers: it was dull, post-rock neo-rave synth-backed pop with vocals that are less grime-rap and more melodic, Enter Shakari-esque than they used to be. It’s all been done before and better.
The band take their ideas from hardcore rock and add disco synthesizers, yet they still think they’re dangerous, trying to menace the audience from the stage and ranting loudly and unintelligibly between melodies – nonetheless, the fans love it. Hadouken! jump straight into the mosh pit to let out their teenage angst, only to find happy people jumping into each other to fast paced distorted disco music.
Tunes like M.A.D. and Bombshock push the crowd’s excitement to fever pitch, but none of the music can be called truly individual, all sounding the same with an unswerving format and structure throughout. Now that pop-rave has evolved into pop-dubstep and the likes of Modestep, Hadouken! are quickly becoming a powerful blast from the past.
Photos: Charlotte Bruning
For further information and future events visit Hadouken!’s website here.