Dressed in black, white and red wearing gelled quiffs and bringing an upright black bass along, the 59’s lived up to their name. Forming a classical rockabilly band (lead singer/rhythm guitar, solo guitar, bass and drums) the 59’s told their tales about Cadillacs, tattooed women and the long time you spent on the road driving (in your Cadillac towards a tattooed woman of your choice). The 21-year old front man had a matching boy-like face, but a strong and totally fifties voice. He didn’t commit the same mistake lot of fifties-style singers do: they try too hard to be like Elvis and sing in a way too deep a voice. This young man knows his register and surprises with his musical maturity. The limelight hog of this combo was definitely the bass player. Probably twice the age as the singer, he was swirling around his bass (which he called his ‘girlfriend’ by the way), holding it sideways like a guitar, over his head – or he laid down on top of her, making love to his instrument. The crowd at that time was small, but totally digging it.
Announced as solo artist, the appearance of Rúnar Þórisson on stage surprised. Looked like the older man was accompanied by four guys from a rock band (singer, guitar, bass and drums, all dressed in black) and three girls from an Icelandic krútt band (violin, piano, singers, dressed in hip clothes and wearing red lipstick). These eight musicians produced quite a thick and full sound. Emotional lyrics like ‘children are suffering from hunger and pain’ fitted perfectly with the dramatic multiple sound layers. Even though the musicians seemed very touched, the audience behaved kind of cold.
Deep Jimi and the Zep Creams are probably fans of Deep Purple, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin and Cream – or at least they must like those band names, but they performed original song material in the classical rock band formation. Bass and drums played in tight harmony, the guitar contributed mainly riffs and left a lot of space to fill for the very high voice of the lead singer. The whole performance, including checked shirts, felt kind of nineties. The filled up place was head-nodding to the music and in between songs entertained by the singer’s stand-up numbers.
The crowd turned into a dancing and jumping mob, when LCMDF (Le Corps Mince De Francoise) entered the stage. Two Finnish girls with two mics, one guitar and a drum machine lit the place on fire. The unique style of singing by lead singer Emma, that sometimes tends to be close to spoken, found it’s interesting counterpart in the pop-y and sweet choruses, when Mia joined in harmony singing. The icing on the cake of this strong and powerful music was the self-secure and driving performance. Did I say that the house was on fire?
The audience started chanting “Oh no! Oh no!” (meaning “Oh yes! Oh yes!”) to welcome Oh No Ono from Denmark on stage. A Dylanesque singer (curly hair, guitar, nasal voice) led the four-piece rock-band, which was playing perfectly tight. With a lot of slowing down, speeding up and switching to different rhythms, Oh No Ono showed that they did their homework in dynamics. Their songs created a musical wave: you cannot say where they started or if they will end, but you have to ride it.
When Oh No Ono had finished, the crowd was screaming for more, but unsuccessfully, because Harry’s Gym were on next. Drums, bass and electronics/keys unfold an up-tempo carpet where the female front singer with her velvet voice could slowly walk on. The mixture of driven rhythms and half tempo dreamy singing led to a mellow, but not sad and pleasant (still not boring) ending to the night.