Live Review: Artbreak // The Windmill, Brixton 03/08/2016

The Windmill, Brixton is a humbly sized pub/music venue that has played host to many renowned bands during their infancies, including indie rock giants The Vaccines and Bloc Party. After their show there on Wednesday 3rd August 2016, one can only dream of where Artbreak might be in a few years time. The Brixton pub’s gloomy charm, plastered with musically and politically charged stickers, provided the perfect backdrop for the newly rejuvenated alternative-rock band to showcase their talents as they played a set made up entirely of new songs.

It is pertinent to mention the support act of the night, Recoba. ‘Hello Glastonbury,’ their frontman ironically shouted as he took to the stage, before satisfying the admittedly sparse audience with an excellent set that would not have been out of place at the legendary festival. They played melodic indie rock infused with clear influence from the likes of Mac Demarco. This is a seamless blend of styles in their virtuosic hands. Recoba’s impressive bass-lines and catchy riffs were most prominent in their song, ‘With You,’ which was the best-received track of their set. Due to their impressive performance and lack of media coverage, a link to their Soundcloud account has been included at the bottom of this article alongside a link to Artbreak’s Soundcloud. Get listening and give both bands the attention that their talent warrants.

However, despite Recoba’s great set, Artbreak were not overshadowed and headlined the evening powerfully. The phoenix that rose from the ashes of The Savage Nomads (a former incarnation of the band) opened its set with ‘Rosebud.’ From the moment he stepped on stage, Cole Salewicz, the band’s frontman, performed with a distinctive energy and his unique vocal style gave the band a definitive edge. In addition, the complex musical relationship between Artbreak’s two guitarists and bassist became apparent as their individual roles intertwined to create a melodic wall of noise. Guitar solos regularly featured throughout the energetic performance, helping to accentuate Artbreak’s masterful musicianship.

The whole band were clearly accomplished performers. This was highlighted as Salewicz had his rock-star moment for the evening: lifting his mic-stand and slamming it back onto the floor, before leaving it to fall off of the stage. This was somewhat refreshing as recently, fewer and fewer acts are expressing themselves in this passionate way. It would certainly be enthralling to see this kind of performance in a larger venue.

From their 45 minute set packed full of tracks that will doubtlessly be considered some of the finest London-born alternative music of the era, it can be inferred that Artbreak are not a band who set out to creatively emulate any other band. They make music that pays homage to a variety of influences and yet is not directly comparable to any one artist before them. Artbreak truly are taking the art of alternative music in a brand new direction; one can only hope others follow suit. Looking for a band that could define London’s sound through producing innovative music? Give Artbreak a listen.

Artbreak Soundcloud Account:

Recoba Soundcloud Account:

Words by Harry Kite

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