'Think New Order, LCD Soundsystem and Donna Summer' Norwich's finest Sink Ya Teeth at Norwich Arts Centre
PUBLISHED: 08:03 12 January 2019 | UPDATED: 08:03 12 January 2019
In more than 20 years of gig going this is genuinely one of the first times I've attended more because of the support band rather than the main act.
In more than 20 years of gig going this is genuinely one of the first times I’ve attended more because of the support band rather than the main act.
That’s no disrespect to headliners Algiers, more because first up at the Arts Centre are Norwich’s finest Sink Ya Teeth.
And I just can’t get enough of this duo right now.
The band, made up of lead singer Maria Uzor bass player Gemma Cullingford, are riding high following a stack of well-deserved rave reviews for their self-titled debut album.
Not only has it been lauded by critics - it was even named one of BBC6 Music’s albums of 2018.
But so far my only live taste of them was outside The Forum in 2017 when they played a lunchtime Lord Mayor’s gig in which my son and I and a drunk couple were pretty much the only ones taking note and dancing.
Gemma told me after Friday night’s gig that gig was one of their worst live experiences so far - but I loved it at the time, a sign of how infectious their songs are and how engaging they are as a band,
I also think their music was made for being played live.
When I listen to Sink Ya Teeth I think New Order, LCD Soundsystem and, strangely, the cult TV series Stranger Things.
Their sound is dominated by heavy bass, dancey drum loops and Maria’s brilliant vocals.
They do not disappoint and put in a 40-minute set that leaves a sizeable crowd wanting more.
All of their eight songs are highlights but particular mention should go to Substitutes, an attitude heavy Complicated and If You See Me, their debut single which put them on the radar of so many people.
But they save the best until last with brilliant set closer Glass, a longer, dancier, more upbeat tune than their others, which gives more than a nod to Donna Summer’s I Feel Love.
And this is a direction I’d like to see Sink Ya Teeth head next. If they can get the right producer behind them I believe Norwich has on its hands one of the most exciting prospects in British indie/dance music right now.
And hopefully it won’t be too long before more is what we get as surely next time they have to return as arts centre headliners?
After all that, for this reviewer at least, actual headliners Algiers would have to go some to match the enjoyment of Sink Ya Teeth. Musically there’s not much similarity between the two bands.
US-based four-piece Algiers are all heavy guitars and thrashing drums, accompanied by lead singer Franklin Fisher’s angry gospel like vocals.
It’s an amazingly intense experience and when they get it right it sounds fresh and powerful and you can see why they’ve earned rave reviews for their punky, bluesy protest songs.
But for me it doesn’t quite hit the spot enough and is a bit too chaotic and lacking in songs that nestle themselves in your brain.
That said there’s a decent number of the crowd who find great enjoyment in their hour-long set, moshing along and joyously sending them into the night.