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Top 25 Art Blog - Creative Tourist

Micachu and the Shapes – Live Review

15th October, Scala, London

Written by Katie Weatherall

micachu by michael maitland2

Illustrations by Michael Maitland

Micachu and the Shapes have provided one of 2009’s strongest growers in debut album, stuff sales Jewellery. On first listen, pill splattered with on-trend DIY sounds of vacuums and other found objects, pills it is amiable. But if hastily allowed, it falls inside the bracket of most East London output that perpetually dreams of nailing the ultimate C86 sound by foolishly bashing their assortment of instruments. Only when you really give it the listening attention it deserves do you realise what a skilfully crafted piece of recording it is, elevating the Guildhall trained trio from the toilet circuit to something resembling an award winning act.

micachu and the shapes1

We featured them in the printed magazine during their salad days, and since then they have in most people’s eyes been promoted to the latter with a near miss on a Mercury nod. Now at a well-deserved pinnacle, Mica Levi and her school chums headline London’s Scala with fellow purveyors of noise, The Invisible and justify their pole position.

micachu by michael maitland

To surmise, Micachu and the Shapes deliver. In a live setting, the favourites play out with a tightness and flexibility that befits these classically trained musicians. The idiosyncrasies of each track are giving room to breathe and Levi’s unfaltering commitment to her Bow accent gives her vocals an alluring authenticity. She is flanked by her trusty comrades on keyboards and drums, who nail their parts, delivering an added energy to the performance as opposed it simply being a Mica plus session musicians show. Their matching white t-shirt stage outfits are a similarly unifying symbol, removing any ego or hierarchy within the band.

Micachu and The Shapes

All in all, there are no criticisms. Apart from the lacklustre reaction in the audience, which can probably be explained by the sizable guest list queue, no doubt to celebrate the band’s homecoming. Said queue, caused me to regrettably miss The Invisible’s set but luckily a representative of theirs in the gigantic, shadow casting form of David Okumo joined The Shapes on a track. So at least I got proof of their existence.

If, like me, you stuck with Jewellery and let it bore a Micachu shaped hole in your heart, then I recommend you catch a live performance and give them the almighty holler they deserve.

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