Avida Dollars, Blue Lip Feel & Das Chip Shop: Bungalows & Bears, Sheffield

If Avida Dollars’ reputation is anything to go by, tonight’s performance is gonna get messy. The band’s theory being that, provocative antics equate success. Thought you could stand and watch from a safe distance? No chance. Also along for the ride are, Das Chip Shop and the highly praised, Blue Lip Feel.

The first thing that is apparent when watching Das Chip Shop is that they really enjoy themselves on stage, which manifests itself upon the grinning faces of the audience. They open with a happy number, reminiscent of nineties folk pop rock, before hurling into, ‘JibbaJabba’ which whilst heavier, maintains an element of fun, bringing System Of A Down to mind. This being the lighter side of metal, there are no mosh pits, only singer, Carlos, in his knitted hat, constantly bobbing up and down. By the third song, he is meowing and making cat claw gestures. There are two girls, constantly throwing shapes on the dance floor who obediently mirror back the cat moves. Meanwhile, the band promote themselves with novelty wooden chip shop forks. ‘If you want a fork, come and see us later’ says the vocalist eyeing up the girls as though they are groupies. ‘Greasy Hair’ is more ska influenced whilst ‘Anzup’ can only be described as Yorkshire metal. As Carlos starts wobbling his legs and looking like he is pushing a trolley, the rest of the band remain calm and carry on. They charge through their set like a storm. Just as quickly, they disappear, making you wonder what’s just happened. Or as my friend puts it, ‘It’s like watching my brother have a tantrum.’ Quite.

Ah the stylish Blue Lip Feel. There is something quite seventies, American rock about these guys which can be seen in their chequered shirts and long hair and their old school sounding guitars in songs such as, ‘Velvet Cape’. Everyone pushes to the front. It’s pretty crammed considering Das Chip Shop have removed their giant papier dinosaur mascot. ‘Rinse Me Down’ gets everyone dancing or at least toe tapping, and its sudden change of pace makes it all the more interesting. The last song reinforces the old seventies vibe, sounding a lot like the Strokes, only with more soulful vocals. Blue Lip Feel don’t have as many tricks up their sleeves, but the music and the overwhelming interest from fans, speaks for itself.

And so, chaos ensues with Avida Dollars’ front man, Joseph, spreading his arms out like a rock’n’roll Jesus. The lead guitarist, Apple, somehow manages to form a conga line. This doesn’t really go with the psychedelic music, but this is just the first of many random acts. Apple takes to the keyboard and sets it to a thumping electro dance beat between songs. Then, it’s back to a song pumped full of too many guitars. ‘Joseph And The Argonauts’ is the catchier of the tunes; just mind the crazy dancing girls, and Joseph, who lunges forward, looking slightly pissed, with his unimpressed eyes rolling around in his head. Avida, then do an epic rendition of The Kingsmen’s, ‘Louie Louie’ which seems to go on for hours. Joseph rolls around the floor still murmuring ‘Louie Louie’ with the wire wrapped around him before being piled on by the crowd. Then, Apple climbs up onto the bar as does Joseph, who then crowd surfs with his middle fingers extended in defiance. By now, Apple has given his guitar to someone else. The music gradually fizzles out and as the wrecked room comes to its senses, I’m just amazed that the glass of water that has been stood by Joseph’s foot all night is still standing.

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