-We-Are-Z- at Tooting Tram & Social
The Tooting Tram & Social is a classic Victorian-era tram shed that has been dragged from obsolescence – as these things routinely are – and given a second life through its conversion into a lively and attractive South London bar. Analogously, -We-Are-Z- are providing the same resuscitation to early-80s new wave, appropriating sounds and vibes of a previous musical era and revitalising them as something distinctly modern.
An Anglo-French five-piece who have only just begun stretching their feathered-blazer wings in a live setting, -We-Are-Z- provide a deceptively well-honed set, showcasing an energetic amalgam of Depeche Mode, XTC-inflected electro-pop and a percussive exuberance reminiscent of Friendly Fires and Foster the People.
The resurgence of electro-indie has been marked ever since the release of The Killers’ Hot Fuss, and it is credit to -We-Are-Z- that they seem capable, ten years on, of producing an entertaining and engaging set full of irresistibly danceable tunes amid an already quite saturated musical field.
The premise of the evening is to showcase their new single Airbrush, which is a robotic yet anthemic pop song in the vein of Reflektor-era Arcade Fire – but really it’s possible to envisage any or all of the set-list working a treat on a late-afternoon summer festival crowd. Easy ripples with a captivating fluidity and bristly guitar work, while A.N.I.M.A.L. is unrestrained, joyous and rabidly catchy.
Despite it being essentially an old vehicle they seek to mobilise, their modern interpretation is promising and, judging by the enthusiastic response from the modest gathering in Tooting, convincing enough to make their smooth ascendancy easy to imagine.
Photos: Robin Pope
For further information about -We-Are-Z- and future events visit here.
Listen to Airbrush here.