Having garnered tips to be one of this years favourites to jump out of obscurity and into the larger public’s consciousness, it would be easy to assume that Chapel Club are the finished article; a tight confident band with half a dozen songs that will be inescapable from when festival season hits, yet tonight’s showing on a dark basement club stage tells otherwise – tonight Chapel Club do not look nor sound like a band approaching a major breakthrough. It may be partly due to the muddied sound quality, but tonight their performance lacks that vital factor that separates them from every other White Lies-adoring, depressive rock band seeking their five minutes of fame – worse still their performance at times becomes a little cringe-worthy. Retreating into a drab, charisma free, unmemorable performance, the effects laden glum Chapel Club both look and sound uncomfortable onstage. Given time this may well be rectified, but it highlights that, for now, Chapel Club are still currently taking their first few steps before they reach a comfortable footing. Writing them off so quickly would be negligent – so many established tastemakers can’t be completely wrong, can they?
By Nathan Westley
Originally published in issue 14 (vol 3) of Loud And Quiet. February 2010