The Thekla really is a spectacular venue, situated
on the docks in Bristol’s city centre, it
was a fantastic feeling to actually be on board
a boat and listen to some live music. The Chapman
family were a fitting support band, they were
tight, the sound was clear, and the vocals were
good. These guys were fairly easy to listen to;
you could just sit back and appreciate what they
were doing on stage. Also reminded me at times
of Joy Division, which isn’t such a bad
thing in my book.
As The Joy Formidable entered the stage this
boat was filled to the brim! There wasn’t
one square inch left in the place. We were like
sardines in a tin, but none of it mattered when
this amazing sound blasted from the amplifiers.
Never before have I heard such a crisp, beautiful
sound. Lead singer Ritzy Bryan has it all, this
woman is beautiful, she has style, she can play
guitar, and her vocals are so captivating. She
knew how to interact with the crowd, and seeing
as we were on board a boat she mentioned how the
band had tried to learn some nautical terms, it
was fun and uplifting to have such a pleasant
atmosphere in the place.
This set was nicely broken up by some electro
twists in places, it really tied in well. There
were some outstanding build ups to the finales,
becoming so intense in places, the noise getting
louder and louder, you could see the band putting
every single drop of energy they had into this
performance and it wasn’t going unnoticed.
Every note was perfect, every drum beat was on
queue and not one person in the place could hold
back from moving to the music.
Ritzy and vocalist/bass player RhydianDafydd
had about 14 guitar pedals each, not one of them
was going unused. This music was experimental,
but not so psychedelic that it could be specified
to an acquired taste to that of bands such as
Yes or JethroTull. When Ritzy and Rhydian sang
vocals together they complimented each other really
well, especially during ‘’Buoy’’.
There was such a powerful silence before dropping
the riff back into this song, and then everything
exploded. Ritzy even grabbed a drum stick and
battered the cymbals for the end of the tune.
‘’Cradle’’ was another
highlight, such energy on stage, you could see
the passion for thisemulating from Ritzy’s
eyes, it was incredible to witness. They went
off stage and roadies came to re-tune their guitars.
They returned and thanked the crowd, and expressed
how much of an awesome venue we were in. They
went full steam ahead into ‘’A Heavy
Abacus’’. I couldn’t help but
think how awesome it was to see a female fronted
band that wasn’t generic or stereotype,
it really was an experience watching these guys.
I would recommend anyone and everyone to go and
see The Joy Formidable, the pure, raw talent is
something worth being a part of. Remarkable.
The Chapman Family - 3.5/5
The Joy Formidable - 5/5
Review By Karlie M