Amber Run at Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen
Hoxton Square Bar & Kitchen provided a cosy space for Amber Run’s first ever London gig last night. It’s the latest stage in what has been a quietly meteoric rise for the five friends who met at Nottingham University. Since forming the band last year (originally called Amber) they’ve released their debut EP, been championed by BBC Introducing and signed to RCA Records.
They’re certainly a clean-cut bunch. Decked out in Topman’s finest skinny jeans and shirts, the five members of Amber Run took to the stage to a smattering of whoops and applause from the modestly sized crowd. From the sound of their setlist they’re destined for far bigger receptions in the very near future, but these are the kind of small-scale gigs that prove a band’s mettle. They certainly have the sound to go far.
The group deal in big-hearted romanticism, etched into a framework of easily accessible indie folk. There were certainly shades of Mumford and Sons’ epic sweep in tracks like Little Ghost and Heaven. The former began with the gentle strumming of guitar before the inevitable steady bass drum beat began and the song built to a soaring catharsis. It may not be the most original formula in the world but it works. Later on in the set, Spark began with the lyrics “first comes the spark, and then the flame”, subtly reflective of the band’s growing success.
For such a young band, Amber Run have already thoroughly nailed indie rock 101 sound, a few nice touches thrown in here and there (the end of Little Ghost ended in a pleasantly harmonised a cappella) augmenting the standard mixture of piano, guitar and drums. The instruments all did what they should and the vocals reached the right emotional peaks when called upon. Like their forebears Mumford and Sons and Coldplay, perhaps Amber Run could add a small dose of danger to the mix every now and then – but both of those bands sell millions of records so perhaps Amber Run are fine as they are.
Photos: Adam Bennett
For further information and future events visit Amber Run’s website here.
Watch the video for Noah here: