Thursday 19 June 2014

Broods and Conway at Madame Jo Jo's - 17 June 2014

Conway pic by Christie Goodwin

It's a bright summer's evening. The sun shines on the nudie bars and gaudily shirted fans making their way to Trafalgar Square to watch the World Cup.

I stride in the opposite direction, taking my position in the comforting dark of Madame Jo Jo's.

First up is Conway, a band from Los Angeles that is the vehicle for the singer Kassia Conway.

Kassia is dressed in black and immediately bounces into a set of choreographed calisthenics that is as inspiring for the unfit body as her music is fun for the ears.

Kassia is a taut pillar of muscle. Her's is a dancer's body with not an ounce of fat on it. Her strength and steel make you want to join a gym and actually go to it. And not just go once or twice and then sit at home on the sofa scoffing doughnuts. Hypothetically.

Her songs are good too. The band lay down infectious dance rhythms and sing along with a succession of tunes characterised by big choruses. Kassia prowls around them, either singing close up to their beaming faces or playfully planting karate kicks up past their ears.

Each song sees Kassia Conway performing a different, gruelling set of moves. She comes across as professional and as tough as nails, but is actually quite sweet and chatty when she breaks character between songs. She's all kinds of impressive and well worth checking out.

The venue is rammed this evening. The majority are ex-pats here to see New Zealand club act Broods.

Caleb Nott and his younger sister Georgia and sing and play keyboards. She's dressed in a black sports top and assays a series of dance moves. She's not quite up to the gym-bunny rigour of the previous act but is pleasant and plumptious nonetheless.

Broods specialise in earnest, emotional dance music with a generally down tempo groove to it. These are epic songs of raw feeling that don't really have any life off the dancefloor.

The crowd are in raptures, joining in, calling out to the band and generally whooping it up. The Nott siblings are warm, friendly and slick, but possibly a little too generic to make much of a long term impression.

Coming out of the venue, I find that Brazil have drawn nil - nil with Mexico. It was the right decision to come here after all.

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