Gig review

North Atlantic Oscillation

I’m not even sure who’s putting on this night – I hadn’t seen it advertised anywhere other than on the band’s myspace, surely it’s not that powerful? But it’s pretty damn busy for a wet, sticky Tuesday evening. Either way I was looking forward to tonight immensely as my only previous experience of NAO was at the woefully inadequate Nektar Bar whose sound system did not even come close to doing the band justice. Tonight however, we need not worry as the PA in Henry’s is a heck of a lot better. NAO take to the small stage and proceed to excite and wow the throng gathered before them.
For a band with little or no hype about them, it is truly special to hear them at this early stage in their career; the potential is frightening with songs like ‘`Star Chamber’ and ‘`Drawing Maps from Memory’ showcasing their talent and obvious knowledge of music. From The Beach Boys to Jeff Wayne’s ‘`War of the Worlds’ to Radiohead to The Beta Band, they are a music enthusiast’s wet dream who have more ideas in a half hour set than some bands could come up with in an entire career. For two guys they have a mighty sound, albeit with the aid of a laptop, and really take some of their songs to sonic heights, all the while managing to sound experimental while retaining the basis of song and a melody. If ever the phrase ‘`Ones to watch’` applied, it is stamped all over these guys.

John Paul Mason