I didn’t get the name until I saw the band live: there is a beast within La Bête Blooms, and it is a wonder to see it unleashed.
Having spoken to the band before their gig, it was difficult to link them to the “horrible noise” they had described in previous interviews. The five people in front of our camera admitted their shyness and were incredibly subdued. I’d listened to their EP, and was prepared for some serious guitar work, alongside the “raw energy” Daniel Mawer said the band wished they could capture in their recordings. But my mind couldn’t have conjured the true intensity of this band.
The Back Room in Fruit is beautifully intimate, creating that living-room sentiment while having the power of a main stage. The band stood in the crowd as supporting acts My Pleasure and Kev La Kat performed, which is something I admire about Hull bands playing to Hull audiences.
The set started calmly, with the band urging people to step forward and them doing so in a polite manner (at one point a charming tall gentleman asked the woman in front of me to step to the side so that I could take a photograph). Mawer was all smiles, greeting those who had ventured out for the purpose of enjoying their music.
Then, within seconds it seemed, John Copley was throwing himself into his raging guitar, and both he and Mawer were a blur of energy, enveloped by the sound. Getting that picture took some time, as they didn’t seem to stop, adrenalin flowing like a stormy river in their veins. This was one of the things I found really powerful about their performance; between songs there was an extension of sound as the band improvised smoothly into the next track.
The most captivating moments were those when Mawer’s lyrics were given a chance to shine through the music. Their recorded tracks do lack some the intensity of their live sound, but allow you to submerge yourself in the lyrics. With so much going on, it was difficult at times to do this live, and so the band calmed in order to allow Mawer’s hauntingly striking solos to work their magic, drawing the audience into the words as he looked out intently at everyone stood in the room.
The event ended in a fit of that promised raw energy as they closed with the song ‘All For You’, leaving chaos on stage. Mawer, having thrown his guitar down and leaving two mic stands upturned, concluded by stepping into the crowd, and steadily leaving the room within the body of the audience.
This set was a definitive example of the power within music, and certainly defined why the live performance is always better.
You can see La Bête Blooms perform live at Adelphi on Thursday 27th November, alongside Foolish Atoms & My Pleasure. They’re even giving away free CDs for the first 20 people through the door.
Review originally written for Browse Magazine Hull, alongside the interview.