Tuesday, February 16, 2016
Live Review :: Telegram :: Hare & Hounds, Birmingham - Feb 11 2016
Hare & Hounds, Birmingham
February 11 2016
Words/Photo: Rosie Mulhern
Asked to whizz along to catch the glam-rock stompin' outfit that is London's Telegram, I have to admit going into this not knowing what to expect. However, if I felt like that going in, I left in no doubt about what I had just seen.
Thursday night at the Hare & Hounds in Kings Heath, saw the rather snug venue begin to fill up quite nicely as the four-piece piled onto its tiny stage. A roar of a riff became present as the band took on their opening song ‘Rule Number One’ with an aura of sheer confidence and presence the like of which one would expect from the likes of Telegram who have been strutting their stuff on stages for almost three years.
The catchy tunes felt well rehearsed and the band sounded tight as they were confidently led by charismatic frontman Matt Saunders. Charging from one psych-rock blinder to the next, including recent single 'Taffy Come Home', hardly coming up for air. Whilst they definitely produced a unique psychedelic sound with a 70s vibe, there was also a comforting feeling of familiarity about them, perhaps in part due to Saunders' resemblance to a Welsh Brian Ferry.
The thing that caught my attention the most, however, was the way the songs had such a different feel to them, with their sound almost being like a drone with nothing too complex about each one. There's nothing wrong with a bit of simplicity sometimes and this just seemed to add to the appeal.
As they finished their over-too-soon set with an electrifying performance of 'Folly' - which wouldn't have sounded out of place on a Led Zep album - I walked out of the venue gig feeling completely overwhelmed, excited - and with a need to check out more of their music.
With their debut album 'Operator' just released, and US dates - including a showcase slot at SXSW in Texas next month - upcoming, you can only feel that this is a band now gathering momentum. Check them out if you haven't, you may well be - pleasantly - surprised.