Sky Larkin @ Hoxton Bar & Grill
19 Nov 2009
Levi’s One to Watch is renouned to pinpointing the bands which have flown under the radar but are hotly tipped as big talents for the New Year. According to Noize’s Francesca Barker, Leeds outfit Sky Larkin more than proved their worth last month and tells us why.
On this penultimate night of Levi’s Ones To Watch residency at the Hoxton Bar & Kitchen, Sky Larkin proved that only the foolish would take their eyes off them. Constantly teetering on the border of recognition, other than in their home city of Leeds, Sky Larkin prove that this is more a case of the sheer talent coming out of their city, rather than a problem with the band instelf
Tonight’s bill is oestrogen themed, showcasing the best new female fronted talent. Following an electric show from MPHO and singer songwriter Beth Jane Houghton, it is the turn of the sharp tongued Katy, Doug and Nestor: Sky Larkin. The set showcases why Sky Larkin, so long bubbling under the surface, could well explode to the surface in 2010.
‘Fossil, I’ is one of the best that Sky Larkin has to offer, and Katie’s vibrant and direct and delivery entraps the audience. It’s brief two minute length only reiterates the perfect intensity, whilst leaving us panting for more.
‘Matador’ is at once familiar and challenging, the recognition from the crowd visibly flowing back into the band. Punctuated with discordant guitar riffs and beats the song is immediate, and the band’s most anthemic.
‘Pica’ is probably the tune most likely to attract wider attention, it’s catchy melodies giving it the most sing-a-long appeal, if anyone would dare to try challenge Katie in the soulful banshee department.
The somersault headrush of ‘Beeline’ sends the crowd tumbling into the whirlpool that is Sky Larkin. The band frequently refer to the friction that arises during their songwriting sessions, each member of the band having their own methods and madnesses, but this challenge means that the passion and zeal with which each fights their corner results in incredible powerful music.
Sky Larkin are at the moment walking a tightrope, their decisive music somehow not being delivered in a confident enough manner. There’s no reason for this with so much going for them: tonight they’ve rocked out one of the coolest venues in London, Huw Stevens is a fan, the musical heritage of Leeds seeps through their blood, and, as a comeback to the nameless journalist who said of Katie of their Brudenell Social Club show back in February “She’s not even fit.” Well, tonight she was.