Live Review
Nation of Shopkeepers

One of the sunniest bands to come out of Leeds in, well, ever, Aviaries sound as if they’ve strolled right off a beach. Keeping their guitars strapped high, their delicate afro-beat twangs entwine with fractured yelps. Like Bombay Bicycle Club meets Egyptian Hip Hop, belting voices are shadowed by clustered electro beats, and with song titles like ‘Palms’ and ‘Bermuda’ they are more suited to an episode of Hawaiian Five-O than their gritty Northern surroundings.

The crowd shuffle in closer, only to be swept back by the powering drum beats of ‘Camomile’. Finally glancing up from his guitar, singer Scott injects some venom, delivering the opening ‘Don’t You Like Women Darlin’?’ with a hint of a snarl. Chopping and changing their name from ‘Bright Sons’ and ‘Valleys’ to this current moniker, Aviaries thankfully abandoned their proto bawdy 90s guitars for twinkling Casiotones also. They’re still puppyishly young, but debut EP title track ‘Hydrology’ sounds glossy, fresh and accomplished, delivered tonight with shuffle-footed naivety. Increasingly spreading their wings (excuse the pun) across the festival circuit, this band bring a glowing shot of summer to a gloomy winter’s night. And so what if it’s far from their most confident performance? It’s still made exciting by its raw edges and newness. If you’re looking for bands to get excited about in 2011, Aviaries are that band.

By Kate Parkin

Originally published in issue 26 (vol 3) of Loud And Quiet. March 2011