Baby In Vain: Headrow House, Leeds

Headrow House, in Leeds, was surprising quiet for the arrival of Baby In Vain, a band rapidly gaining widespread critical acclaim and repeatedly being given the mantle of ones to look out for in the future. Baby In Vain were supported by fellow up-and-comers Bad Idea and Brooders.

Proceedings opened with Leeds based duo Bad Idea. They confidently mix light and shade, pounding drums and scuzzy guitar riffs with light Pop vocals layered over the top. Lead singer Sarah Sefton’s relaxed, at times out of tune, shoegaze style delivery combined with the driving instrumentation conjures up memories of The Breeders early work.

A rousing set from Bad Idea was quickly followed by yet more power, in the form of Brooders. As their name suggests they are dark, brooding, and sinister with plenty of explosive ferocity. Tracks like “Melancholy” and “Blue Eyed Prince” show that they have a more delicate, mournful, side which builds towards a pulsating finale. Brooders provided one of the most genuinely exciting and dynamic warm-up sets that I have witnessed in quite a while, if you get the chance in future they are definitely worth your time.

It was then the turn of Danish grunge goddesses Baby In Vain. Despite the relatively small crowd there wasn’t even the slightest hint of Baby In Vain toning down their level of performance. They fizzed with energy whilst thrashing out tracks from their debut album “More Nothing”, as well as some choice cuts from their earlier EP “For the Kids”. Their Punk ethos and raw power were even more evident in a live setting, making their display engaging and invigorating.

The trio created a phenomenal amount of noise, so much so that their lack of a bass player was visibly but not audibly noticeable. They juxtapose soft tones with hard hitting riffs and climactic finales. Singer and guitarist Andrea Thuesen provides the more delicate and calming vocal elements and the higher pitched guitar tones. While their other singer and guitarist, Lola Hammerich, delivers angst-ridden, impassioned, punchy vocals. She is a physical embodiment of the anger in their lyrics as she belts out the words, almost screaming at points, and thrashes around the stage.

Each member of the band has a commanding stage presence, as well displaying an impressive skill level on their respective instruments. Drummer Benedicte Pierleoni smashes out punchy and frantic beats while the two guitarists build on their atmospheric base point with driving solos and hyper, flourishing, crescendos. Highlights of a compelling set included a forceful performance of “The Urge” and an explosive rendition of “Jesusfreaks”. Baby In Vain really are an act that undoubtedly have an incredibly bright future and it’s a shame that the gig wasn’t better attended. In years to come they will surely be playing at the bigger venues in the city, to capacity audiences which may be longing for the opportunity to see them in a more intimate setting.

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