Live Review - Tempesst @ The Lexington, London 21/02/2017
Tempesst play with a larger than life energy which feels more likely to be seen on the opposite side of the barriers at a major festival rather than in the small personal space of The Lexington.
The five piece band go on to command the attention of the crowd with tracks that go from moody western sing-along riffs to psychedelic rock and roll without ever seeming disjointed, always remaining connected by an overall confidence and swagger which is completely and undeniably Tempesst. A highlight of the evening comes is Tempesst’s newest single Sunflower Lady, which is at often reminiscent of 60’s Beatles in it’s unconventional combination of South Asian sounding guitar drones and outrageously catchy hooks.
Support, Tuska, also brought more than their fair share to the table with a set of impressive progressive riffing that kept the audience guessing whilst still feeling like it was able to be danced to. The group played together with the accuracy and flexible groove that can only come from a band that are confident in the skills of their fellow members.
Similarly, whilst Tempesst band nail the head banging and confident marching of the stage, there is also an underlying sense that you’re a guest in the presence of friends. As the group play there are occasional off the hand remarks and in jokes, grins and nods that remind the audience that the accuracy and technical skill of the music are the fruits of long hours of practice and dedication. The ferocity of Tempesst’s set eventually takes it’s toll, both the band and the audience as a whole noticeably flushed in the heat which has built up in the room throughout the night as the crowd have become ever more immersed in the experience, nodding and singing to the music exactly as intended.
Bands such as Tempesst are a testament to the gems that can be found outside of the major London gig circuit. Whilst the cream of the crop are guaranteed to make it to the most prestigious of venues, there is pleasure in finding them first in the back streets of London - where you can offer compliments on a set well played and hope that they do well enough to tell the story of how you liked them “before they were cool, man.”
Words by Nick Roberts