As the fireworks light up Nottingham’s old market square at the Christmas lights ceremony, a gaggle of cardigan clad indie kids watch Goodnight Lenin tune up twin telecasters for their rather excellent support set at The Bodega. Their sound fuses a London-Folk, Noah and the whale feel with rockier Band of Horses style jangles. The intimate crowd are gradually sucked forward. Goodnight Lenin have some well written songs; dynamic interplay between the guitarists and the added punch of three talented vocalists harmonising well. I very much expect that in their next tour they will be headlining.
And so it comes to the main act of the night: Boat to Row. Things aren’t off to a great start with the band admitting they have forgotten their set list and the fact that their sound man is stuck in a traffic-jam doesn’t make things better. The six piece’s sound is folky and pleasant, reminiscent of Stornaway crossed with Of Monsters and Men, with violins and French Horns thrown in to liven things up. A perfect example is ‘Loyal Light’, the title track off their new E.P.
The track’s off beats and delicious vocal melodies perfectly suit the intimacy of the Bodega, although admittedly the first night of the tour-nerves and their unlucky start meant that at times the band lacked the charisma and stage presence that the band are famous for. Hopefully as the rest of the tour unfolds they’ll be able to bring their songs back to life.
By Josh Schofield.