Jeff Angell’s Staticland – The Black Heart, Camden (Live Review)

Tucked away down a narrow alley in Camden Town is the pub The Black Heart. I was immediately struck by the fact that people seem to either be in on the secret of this little venue, or completely unaware of it. As soon as I walked into the pub I was immersed in the rock atmosphere. Poster, badges and other band memorabilia were emblazoned on the walls and rock music was being funneled into the bar through speakers. I was instantly put in the mood to rock out. I climbed a narrow staircase and emerged into the music venue where the acts would perform. Dim lighting, exposed black brickwork and the tiny stage gave the venue an intense feel. I knew I was in for an exciting night and more specifically an exciting night of rock.

As headliners Jeff Angell’s Staticland took to the stage their experience and maturity as a rock band was evident while supports Buffalo Summer were clearly still young and passionate about music. Their styles of performance were different. Jeff Angell’s Staticland took to the stage under cloak of darkness. The lights slowly came on. It was very dramatic and was exactly the sort of show you would expect from a formidable rock band. The lights came on as the bass pulsed. I felt as if the music was throbbing under my feet. Jeff Staticland interspersed his songs with jokes. It put the audience at ease and created a connection between him and them. Jeff Angell has an intense persona. He seems like a larger than life character as you would expect from a rock star. However after the show I approached him and he seemed warm and friendly. He offered me a free CD. He gave me the quote ‘It’s good work if you can get it’ about his attitude to music and being a rock star. This quote just reinforces the band’s passion for music. They are doing what they love. At once point Jeff Angell abandoned the stage and weaved his way through the crowd. He approached members of the crowd and grabbed their phones engaging them in photographs. One of the standout songs from Jeff Angell’s Staticland set was ‘High Score’ which was a sublime mix of Jeff Angell’s singing and the band’s instruments. It was a perfect example of a rock anthem.

The band Buffalo Summer had a very different style of performance to Jeff Angell’s Staticland. Whereas Jeff Angell’s Staticland have a very intense way of performing Buffalo Summer seemed to just want to have fun and rock out. If I had had a preconceived idea of what a rock star and a rock band is it’s Andrew Hunt and Buffalo Summer. Andrew Hunt’s vocals were gritty enough to suit the music he sings. The band seemed like they were enjoying themselves as they performed their set. I could not resist head banging along to their songs. They were thrashing about the stage stirring the audience into a state of excitement and abandonment. They performed such songs as ‘Down by the River’ which was a mingling of rock and country.

Both acts provided a night of enjoyment and excitement. I had never been to a rock concert before but enjoyed both acts immensely and by the end of the night I was thrashing my hair about as if I had been listening to rock music my entire life.