Review: Gold Teeth @ Camden Barfly, Feb 23rd 2009.

Gold Teeth @ Barfly Camden Feb 23rd 09 by

Gold Teeth – Bread and Butter

Tonight the occasion is Gold Teeth’s single launch party for ‘Everybody’ released yesterday through Pure Groove but more to that later.

Voluntary Butler Scheme (VBS) play as main support at this Camden gig getting busier by the minute. VBS is really Rob Jones and his bedroom pop tunes made of admirable loops of guitar, keys, synth and drums and Rob’s tongue-in-cheek vocals. Live however he’s joined by an energetic, pretty shit hot drummer and a less notable third member on keys who if it wasn’t for the occasional movement of his hands, I could swear was a mannequin. Technical trouble means that the band start later than scheduled and have to zip through a set of about five songs. To begin with I’m not won over, songs like ‘Launderette’ fizz along with a mid tempo Beatles meets Beck vibe and get my toe tapping but I can’t help feel I’d be happier listening to it on my headphones on my way home on the tube where I could pick out all the idiosyncrasies a little easier.

His last two songs thankfully manage to take it to the next level though, especially ‘Tabasco Sole’ with it’s catchy ‘stepping in the devil’s shoes’ chorus and winning line ‘if you ever start to feel square wear a De La Soul t-shirt from time to time to make you feel more hip-hop than you are’. It’s fun, it’s clever but it’s not too fresh.

Gold Teeth on the other hand are just that. An EXCITING new London five piece who are hard to pigeonhole musically, which is usually (but not always) a good thing.  A few of the sounds they play around with are slick indie guitar lines, reggae and calypso vibes, psychedelic electro bleeps and keys and a tight bass and drum sound bordering heavier rock music territories. They even have a xylosynth player for Pete’s sake! They use their unique melange well with some genuine musical ability to add to their variety. Drummer Will Ritson dons a t-shirt from heavy metal giants Pantera this evening and the way he pounds away you know he wouldn’t be too out of place banging out a metal drum solo or two. Thankfully either he or his band is too wise to allow that!

Joe DaCosta is self-labelled ‘mouth’ of the band and he’s clearly up for it this evening, probably high on sugar after steadily chugging a bottle of ‘Kick’ (me either?) for most of the evening. The band launch straight in at breakneck speed to the powerful ‘Confused Blue’ which is a highlight of the set, and of their material so far for me, with a sweet electric guitar line accompanied by hypnotic keys and then a brief switch into a heavy, Rage Against The Machine esque hip hop interlude mid way through. It’s a quick run through all the things they do well in one song and leaves me wanting more.

‘Tasty’ is another stand out, less rocky and more indie electro with an anthemic almost Blur feel to it, Joe’s endearing London twang coming to the forefront for the sing-along chorus of “I’m feeling so comatose, I’m feeling so comatose and now I know, I know I don’t like it’. Unfortunately excellent B-side ‘Roll It Over’ doesn’t make an appearance this evening but A-side and debut single ‘Everybody’ is the reason for the gig tonight so appropriately closes the show. The crowd is already won as the reggae-tinged tune kicks in with its marriage of feel good tempo and bittersweet ‘Everybody is everybody’ and ‘You don’t even laugh at me’ lyrics. He’s right, no-one is laughing, smiling with delight yes, laughing no. Gold Teeth have arrived and it looks like they’ve got the right balance of big pop tunes and musical depth to cause quite a stir.

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