Photo: Lonely The Brave’s Website
Lonely the Brave are something of a contradiction of themselves: their music has been described as “Biffy Clyro-shaped stadium rock” which is not particularly inaccurate as their music is loaded with soaring sing-along choruses and floaty, melancholic guitars, but their live performance is distinctly suited to intimate club venues and cold November nights.
Vocalist David Jakes stands at the back of the stage by the drum riser, rejecting the role of frontman completely, barely even facing the audience as he sings mainly, it seems, for himself. The rest of the band put on a relatively typical performance for a rock band but it seems like overcompensation when in reality Jakes’ anti-performing is far more captivating. With so many bands currently recycling the same tired stage showmanship to death, it’s refreshing to see something so honest and genuine, and what’s more, it fits Lonely The Brave’s songs far more than any amount of pop-punk jumping about would.
Despite being plagued by technical difficulties throughout the first half of their set, the band plows through performing mostly of cuts from their debut The Day’s War with a few new songs from their upcoming record. It’s perfectly enjoyable but with the best tracks opening and closing the show, there’s a sense that Lonely the Brave don’t quite have enough musically to pull out to make a headline set as engaging as it should be. A few too many songs start to sound too similar in the worst way possible: a little too mid-paced and safe, a little too catchy-by-design rather than by simply being strong songs. The high points – notably ‘Trick of the Light’, ‘Backroads’ and ‘Black Saucers’ – are great but the majority is just a bit dull. Lonely the Brave could have great things ahead but tonight they appear to still be developing their craft.
Joe Gilbertson @