Darlia at Camden Barfly
Darlia walked onto the stage at Camden Barfly to the sound of Dick Dale’s Misirlou. It seemed like a very cheery, not too serious, tune to walk out to – perhaps even a joke. It was a shock when Darlia started playing their loud, bass-heavy rock.
Darlia, from Blackpool, are a young band, set to release their first album this year. They play what can be described as noise rock, with grunge and punk influences. Their look seems to be based on Nirvana, with the lead singer sporting a Cobain-style haircut. But their sound is not quite Nirvana.
The set started off loud and energetic. The bass player was an interesting character to watch; while head banging and with a wide stance, he seemed to be truly in his element, full of confidence.
The set lasted only a short 30 minutes, without an encore. The songs tended to blend into one, with no distinguishable melodies. Just the indiscernible wails of the singer, heavy bass and fast drums. Some songs had more of a punk feel, with the singer almost telling a story through his lyrics. The crowd were quite distracted: chatting, taking photos, kissing. Yet the audience at the very front lapped it up.
The last songs of the set were the most crowd-pleasing. As soon as the opening guitar riff to Napalm started, the audience were jumping. It’s a catchy song, probably the most accessible of the set. It has Darlia’s loud, fast rock but also a catchy chorus. Even though it sounded like their lightest song, it ended with an audience member shouting “rock and roll!”. Next was Queen of Hearts. The song had everyone in Barfly jumping, clapping along and cheering. The song featured a lighter guitar pop sound, before building into Darlia’s preferred grunge rock. At the very end the band were joined by one enthusiastic teen, who took off his shirt, swung it around above his head, before crowd-surfing out of there. The band didn’t stick around and left the stage, just as they started, to the beginning of Misirlou.
Overall, Darlia’s live set is energetic and raw – it’s not hiding anything. Napalm and Queen of Hearts were the notable highlights, and are suggestive of more promising music from the band in the future.
For further information and future events visit Darlia’s website here.
Watch the video for Queen of Hearts here: