CTRL Live melted the Steel City’s heart last night with a truly legendary night featuring one of our best line-ups to date. The doors opened at seven, by seven thirty the venue was almost full and by the time Laurel Collective finished their opening set there were over four hundred party people seeking out the best spot in Bungalows and Bears to enjoy the action. Laurel Collective crammed six people and a whole load of energy into their half hour slot, the two front men traded expertly crafted vocals and the crowd lapped it up.
The bar was set high and while DJs Children For Breakfast dropped Dizzee and other dancefloor bombs the other kind of bar was about four deep. A lot of those people had noticed the super-limited T Shirts featuring a hand-drawn design by Tahita from New Young Pony Club, they didn’t last long.
The Invisible took the stage but proved to be very visible indeed, with lead singer Dave Okumu cutting an impressive silhouette at over six foot, wearing what can only be described as a seriously impressive set of Victorian-inspired capes. Attention was quickly diverted from their look though by their spellbinding songs. A mesmerizing mix of disco, punk and funk shot through with wide-open spaces full of guitar noise and spaced out atmospherics so light you felt as if you could almost float away.
Once the rapturous applause had died down Children for Breakfast brought us back down to earth with a thump, raising the temperature with some stomping electro house mixed up with a touch of Yeasayer, and did we even hear a cheeky Black Eyed Peas bootleg?
The time had come though and New Young Pony Club had come to party, fired up from their NME Awards show a few nights before, they were running at full steam. Andy did us proud by wearing one of the custom designed T-Shirts and they launched into a rollercoaster of a set. The good news is the disco-punk energy of their earlier material is still here but they’ve taken it a shade deeper, darker and roughed up the edges a bit for the new stuff. Old tracks like ‘Ice Cream’ still sounded as delicious as ever next to new ones like the single ‘Lost a Girl’. If you’ll excuse the pun, we’re, ahem ‘optimistic’ about the new album. Sheffield, we salute you!