RECENT GIG ROUNDUP: Øya Festival x Field Day Present @ XOYO + Fiction/No Joy @ White Heat, Madame Jojo’s

On Thursday the 24th of Feb, I ventured down to XOYO, for the first of two events curated by both London’s Field Day Festival and Norway’s Øya Festival, in a AIF Twin festival partnership. Based on the twin towns concept, festivals are paired with likeminded and similarly structured festivals from countries from around the world. Participating festivals will help promote their twin’s festival locally.. I also got to see Fiction the following Tuesday, 1st of March, supported by american lo-fi band No Joy in Soho’s brilliant Madame Jojo’s at it’s weekly White Heat night.

Norway’s charismatic sextet Team Me opened up the proceedings. Their erratic, live stage presence coupled with grandiose songs, in a stripped-down version of Sufjan Stevens mould, definitely got the crowd excited. Songs like, and , really translated well into the live environment. The incredibly youthful looking band get mad into the music, their excitement and obvious love of what they are doing probably part of the reason that it was so enjoyable to watch them even if keyboardist’s cute dancing was slightly embarrassing.

STREAM: “Dear Sister”
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Lucy Swann took to the stage next, accompanied by a couple of other musicians as she unleashed some good electro-pop beats on the crowd. An artist very much in the same vein as say Little Boots or Ellie Goulding and one can imagine her gaining quite the following in the near future. Of course, this appraisal isn’t unwarranted, she very ably displayed her amazing voice, ending her set with a stripped back acapella that employed some very slick vocal looping. Watch out for her in the months to come.

STREAM: “Undercover”
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Additionally, Øya, in collaboration with Rough Trade have released a limited edition 7” single. The double a-side will feature Lucy Swann and Team Me and came out on February 7th exclusively from Rough Trade. This project is done in collaboration and supported by Music Export- Norway´s London office. Buy Here.

Seeing Fiction at both gigs it struck me that they are a band full of notorious perfectionists. Throughout their set at Madame Jojo’s they all asked for various adjustments to the monitor when in fact it didn’t sound that bad. It’s a trait that transfers over into their live act in as much as you can tell they are meticulous in the arrangement and choosing of sounds. The songs live sound as well crafted as they do recorded and tracks like “Big Things” were phenomenal as ever, yet my only gripe with Fiction is that, as perfectionist as they seem, some songs fall short of the mark and I think their obsession with arrangement and sound quality should translate well into future songwriting, they definitely have a lot of promise.

STREAM: “Big Things”
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I have to admit it was No Joy, the support at Madame Jojo’s, who were most relentlessly impressive. With a constant distorted buzz cutting through the crowd there was no room for words. Recently touring with both Best Coast + Wavves, No Joy offer up a very different, darker slant on the Lo-Fi scene, tracks like “Hawaii” sound incredible but also ominous and dark. The frantic set was very much an aural assault and the group’s charismatic autonomy, with the lack of communication and female member’s head-banging, that made them virtually unidentifiable

STREAM: “Hawaii”
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Read more info about the Festivals and White Heat @ Madame Jojo’s at the following links; Øya, Field Day, White Heat and Madame Jojo’s.

Image – Lucy Swann – Source