Gig review: Revere at Brudenell Social Club, Leeds

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Revere could never be accused of lacking in ambition.

The London-based septet combine a dizzying mish-mash of influences, ranging from gypsy marches and klezmer to film scores and post-rock, and they’ve previously worked alongside Malian kora player Toumani Diabaté and guitarist Vieux Farka Touré.

On the road to promote second album My Mirror / Your Target, their touring contingent has been reduced to five members and their explicit musical influences have likewise been streamlined. The primary touchstone tonight is orchestral post-rock, with the flickering monochrome projections echoing those used by Godspeed! You Black Emperor.

Musically, however, this is post-Arcade Fire with the occasional reference to the gloom-rock of the Augustines. What separates their slightly derivative sound from such acts is their ability to adapt the lush, cinematic post-rock template with a more poppy, accessible edge and a rousing sense of optimism.

A case in point is ‘We Won’t Be Here Tomorrow’, which is described by front-man Stephen Ellis as his ‘Neil Diamond moment’. Imbued with a sense of amorphous unease and tension, its doomy layers of instrumentation gradually build into one of the most uplifting tracks you’ll hear all year.

It’s a formula that’s repeated to even more dramatic effect on the epic ‘Don’t Look Up, Hannah!’. Opening with dialogue from a man with clipped 1930’s accent, its gradually drowned out by a surge of stirring sound and chorused vocals from violinist Ellie Wilson and bassist Russell Cook. Swelled by pre-programmed backing track, it segues into the gothic overtures of ‘Fold Up Your Flag’.

This gothic edge, combined with Ellis’ sometimes stentorian vocals, find a natural home in their cover of Depeche Mode’s ‘Enjoy The Silence’. Featuring Marc Rollins’ almost disco style drumming and Wilson’s heavily distorted violin, it offers a satisfying reinterpretation of the original while showing an as yet underexplored dance element to their own compositions.

Gig date: May 8

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