Review: Team Picture, The Howl & The Hum, La Rissa at Pilbeam’s Noise Night, Leeds

Pilbeam's Valantines Special

If I was to proclaim love for anyone this Valentines Day it would have been BBC Introducing West Yorkshire’s Emily Pilbeam for hosting her latest Noise Night – an event of cozy proportions showcasing up and coming Yorkshire artists. Three acts graced the tiny stage of Oporto in Leeds, some Spotify verified, some with festival slots, all at the un-jaded beginning of their artistic careers. From Synth-Pop to something a Howl lot heavier, the artists varied wildly in genre making for a varied palette of local talent.

The mood was set by the rumbling synths and eerie vocals of self-produced Leeds Arts University graduate and ‘one gal band’ La Rissa (Larissa Drozd). Trembling, echoed vocals were rooted in the 80’s but Trip-Hop beats brought it right back to 2018 – think BANKS but darker. Her style is defined and potential obvious, great things are to be expected as her songwriting and stage presence develop.

La Rissa – A Man’s World

Referring to themselves as “6 indivisible individuals from Leeds” self-proclaimed ‘genre tourists’ Team Picture maintained the mystery of their online presence with the unpredictability of their set. Vocals were thrown around the collective and instruments were swapped, meaning you never really knew from which direction to expect their sound. Ending their set with the most drawn-out cover of ‘Unchained Melody’ imaginable, their sound was cyclic, undefined and relentless, the only constant its unpredictability. Here’s their latest track:

Team Picture – (I Have A) Little Secret

Punctuating the first and final act, which could both be described as ‘slow builders’, was the instant clout of York’s The Howl & The Hum. Like Team Picture they seem hesitant to tie themselves to a genre (or a record label for that matter) but Experimental-Rock and Dark-Pop are the most obvious choices.

“Love doesn’t exist. Discuss” – a cynical opening for Valentines Day from frontman Sam Griffiths, in keeping with their poetic (often fantastical) lyricism which is at once cynical and utterly romantic. The performance was brilliant – pure theatre from Griffiths whose upliftingly light yet full voice combined with the new band’s remarkably tight instrumental delivery to produce by far the most crowd energy of the night’s three acts. Catch The Howl & The Hum at Live at Leeds 2018 in May.

The Howl & The Hum – Manea

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