Diesel:U:Music world tour

Read a review of last night's event.....
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Having gathered the great and the good of London’s music scene in Greenwich super club Matter for last year’s U Music tour, Diesel had their work cut out to top what was an extravaganza of whisky soaked musical mayhem. Luckily for them, the clothing label have their finger on the capital’s hipster pulse and last night’s event may just have topped it’s predecessor.

With DJ sets from HeartsRevolution, Joker and MC Nomad, followed by live performances from Young Fathers and critics’ darlings The Big Pink, Diesel pulled out all the stops to ensure that the U Music tour’s London date went off with a bang. And it very nearly did just that. During Young Fathers’ set, the power was suddenly cut as the venue was plunged into a silent darkness. As the smell of smoke drifted over a restless crowd, organisers investigated the problem.

Fortunately, order was soon restored and the Scottish three-piece returned to the stage to burst into a short rendition of ‘The Roof Is On Fire,’ before rushing through the remainder of their set. Prior to the false alarm, Young Fathers’ performance was gathering considerable momentum. A trio of extravagantly attired MCs, their perfectly choreographed dance moves and snappy rhyming was at times, pretty special. Young Fathers are fresh, exuberant and well, quite funny. Clash was left in two minds as to whether or not they were taking the mickey during some dancing that would have had the Backstreet Boys hanging their heads in shame. These MCs are at their strongest when ripping through the trio of Beastie Boys aping numbers, which showcase their ability and leave us in no doubt that they know their hip hop.

With Young Fathers departed the crowd begins to mill around the cavernous venue once again. P3, an underground concrete bunker usually home to the odd art exhibition, is tonight transformed into a hipster’s playground. And London’s party set do not disappoint, Clash even caught a glimpse of Lilly Allen and both Geldof girls strutting around the VIP bar.

As the stage is set for the headliners, it becomes clear that Diesel has triumphed once again. The dance floor is packed, and with free alcohol in plentiful supply, the masses seem content to dance the night away. And this is before the Big Pink have even played a note. In choosing a suitably exciting headline act, Diesel couldn’t have done much better than this particular London duo. Robbie Furze and Milo Cordell have just released one of the year’s great albums, and are currently surfing a tidal wave of hype. Throughout the year, theirs have been the names to drop in music circles and their slew of festival performances this summer went a long way towards justifying the incessant buzz that has surrounded them.

Despite the constant reference to their alleged hedonism and their position at the very core of cool, the Big Pink have consistently let their music do the talking. Robbie and Milo are both knowledgeable and talented, and their carefully crafted noise pop draws from an encyclopaedia of influences, making for a visceral live show. Tonight however, the band get off to a slow start as Milo’s table of industrial noise making equipment suffers some teething problems. Meanwhile, guitarist Robbie and the rhythm section delight in the wait by forming the evening’s first wall of noise. With Milo back on board, the set begins with an epic ‘Too Young To Love’ and wanders via recent single ‘Dominos’ to a final crescendo in the form of early release ‘Velvet.’ On stage the duo cut very different figures, as Robbie writhes around his instrument, trying to bleed out as much noise as is humanly possible, Milo is hunched over his effects table lost in sound.

This is a band totally committed to the noise they make, the care and attention that is poured into the music is there for all to see and they fully deserve to reap the rewards coming their way. So, Diesel have done it again, mixing a richly talented line-up with an ideal venue, it remains to be seen how tonight can be beaten. Roll on next year…

Words by Ben Homewood

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