Live at Leeds Festival 2012 on Thursday, 23rd August 2012
Indie-funk quartet Various Cruelties opened up with an eerie, ominous guitar twang, backed up by a staccato bass line. They were very unique and different from the off, and they were highly impressive due to their immense versatility and adaptability to a variety of musical styles. From mellow creeping blues to bassy punk and even glimpses of funk, their concoction of genres was fresh and vibrant, displaying the band's great talent in performing multiple fields of music. Their texture was full and thriving, despite the small instrumentation within the band. A great stage presence was also visible, with the front-man running about the stage and displaying excellent crowd interaction, psyching the crowd up into a festival spirit. He easily switched his vocals from rap and poetic spoken word to melodic singing. Backing vocal harmonies from the bassist were tuneful and bulky, who also enriched the sound with thick, fluent bass fills, linking together structural sections with funk-ridden riffs. They pulled off a great show and the crowd were eating out of their hand, especially throughout Ian Brown cover 'F.E.A.R'. A brilliant band for everyone to watch out for.
Little Comets, another indie quartet, were less impressive on the whole. They opened with a gentle lilt and a piano dynamic, which was a welcome change from the gung-ho loud dynamics of earlier bands. A loud wailing vocal rode above the shuffling rhythms in the music, and gave a great first impression. However, there was little stage presence and very limited movement about the stage from the whole band. There was little tempo or dynamic transition, and the music became monotonous in a static fashion. Their music was promising, but it needs much more development and elaboration. They have the potential to be a real contender within the local indie scene, and are a promising young act.