Live review: In Isolation / Los

20 Apr

In Isolation and Los played at The Maze for Notts In A Nutshell on Sunday 19 April 2009

Reviewed for LeftLion.co.uk

It’s a true testament to a band’s integrity and passion when they can play a sparsely attended gig and still pour everything into giving a great performance. On Sunday night, The Maze was treated to two bands with just this attitude: Los and In Isolation. Although the night was intimate to say the least, both bands gave it their absolute all and played their socks off for a small but enthusiastic audience.

Los, a three-piece from London who mix a grungy, punky sound with a hint of blues and glorious punchy vocals, started their set with a gorgeous aural mess of feedback, distortion and madness before diving in to a string of songs with so much raw energy it was almost impossible to believe there was only three of them. Their vocalist and frontwoman Helen Sargent powered through the set with passion, gusto and had the most soulful voice I’d heard in a long time, whilst the guitarist and drummer drove each track along with tight, angular beats and truly inventive riffs. With a sound that deserves to bounce around packed-out venues and fields full of fans, Los may well be one of the UK’s most exciting yet unappreciated live bands.

In Isolation then rocked the stage with their blend of indie rock and 80s new wave, delivering an accomplished and energetic performance full of melodic riffs, Echo And The Bunnymen-esque lead guitar and an overall aura of cool (helped by their bassist, who spent half the set leaning casually on a pillar away from the stage!). Judging from frontman Ryan Smith’s charismatic performance along with the band’s skilful musicianship this was clearly a group with experience on their side, who played a difficult gig with conviction, vigour and passion.

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