Live Review: Deep Sea Arcade and The Preatures – The Metro (30.11.2012)

The Preatures come on stage to a welcoming all-ages crowd at The Metro. From the very start of their set, they show enthusiasm and appreciation to be supporting Deep Sea Arcade. They play to an almost full venue but most people are sitting down on the steps.

Despite their interaction with each other, evident ease while playing and a whole lot of talent and sexiness, their set drags a little because of the poor mix and problems with the sound. The bass is much too heavy for their music and it drowns the vocals out.

About halfway through the set, singer/guitarist Gideon Bensen puts down his guitar to strut around the stage and sing. He looks a little like Alex Turner from The Arctic Monkeys, both in hair-style and stage presence.
The Preatures finish their set with a slow song but the poor sound means that Isabella Manfredi‘s voice isn’t as loud as it should be and somewhat overshadowed by the guitars.

Deep Sea Arcade come on stage a little late and they too fall prey to dodgy sound. All through the first three or four songs, they have a roadie moving around on stage, checking cables and unplugging amps. Singer Nic McKenzie can’t be heard well and there is a bit of feedback coming from the guitars.

It is incredibly disappointing for this to happen to such a talented band. It’s not clear whether it’s because of the poor sound, or if there’s something else going on but they seem to move quickly through their set and only stop briefly between songs to take a photo of the crowd – asking them to look like zombies.

‘Steam’ gets a huge reception and the sound improves which is a huge relief. Things improve from here, the set no longer feels rushed and there’s no more feedback. ‘Lonely In Your Arms’ is also a success and has the front part of the crowd jumping around.

New song ‘Black Cat’ sounds great, a lot heavier than what we’ve heard from Outlands and it features a Wolfmother/Led Zeppelin-esque riff. The diehard fans at the front seem to know it but the rest of us nod our heads politely.

‘Girls’ sounds perfect and it’s such a relief that they managed to fix the sound up for at least half of the set. McKenzie invites everyone to the after party at Club 77 – perhaps not realising that at least 50% of the gig attendees are under age. Album-opener ‘Outlands’ closes the set and the band shuffle off.

As everyone starts to move out of The Metro and on to George Street, I notice a girl chasing someone who grabbed one of the setlists. She slips over on someone’s spilled drink and goes flying – but shows no lack of determination and gets straight back up and starts running again.

Deep Sea Arcade played well together and managed to play all of their hits, it’s just a huge shame that the quality of the sound wasn’t up there with the quality of the band itself.

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Justine McNamara

I'm an Australian living in New York. I work in marketing but I write about music, New York, and my own personal experiences.

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