Lonely the Brave at the Old Blue Last
The cramped second floor of the City’s Old Blue Last pub was the stage for a drop-by performance from Cambridge-based rock band Lonely the Brave last night. Apparently, according to lead guitarist Mark Trotter, the homey establishment was host to the band’s first major performance before their fame took off last year.
The five-member group – consisting of Trotter, David Jakes (vocals), Andrew Bushen (bass), Gavin “Mo” Edgeley (drums) and Joel Mason (guitar) – have garnered much praise for their crunchy, classic rock music. According to the band’s website, they have recently signed a contract with Columbia Records with whom they’ll release their second album in September, following the success of their debut The Day’s War. The band’s unusual arrangement on stage had Trotter taking centre stage, head-banging together with Joel Mason and Gavin Edgeley while David Jakes stood in the back – an apparent trademark of the group and one with which Jakes feels most comfortable.
The brief 45-minute show featured a selection of songs taken from the band’s promising premiere effort. The music itself is appealing, although their sound more obviously harks back to the days of grunge. One element of their style that sets them apart from forbears like Pearl Jam or perhaps Creed is the lack of rich, memorable hooks and melodies. The first trio of songs performed – Call of Horses, Black Saucers and Trick of the Light – are all energetic with sharp guitar riffs, but rely more on the beat rather than the melody. The lyrics are poetic and the air of their music is more contemplative and “blue” than other similar bands, such as Kings of Leon. The second half of the performance included the tracks Dinosaurs, Deserter, Victory Line, and their perhaps strongest piece Backroads, where the elements for bigger and better things are promised in the added thrust and stronger melodies.
The performance itself was simple, featuring the above-mentioned unorthodox set-up on the tiny, black corner stage, which actually allowed more room for the guitarists to show off their talents. In truth, they’re usually the most fun to watch. The brevity of the show was disappointing, but perhaps called for due to the venue’s cramped, sweltering confines. The strength of the final tracks show promise that could take Lonely the Brave from garage band to the next big thing in rock music.
Photos: Adam Bennett
For further information and future events visit Lonely the Brave’s website here.
Watch the video for Backroads here: