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LIVING ON THE CEILING
:: Daggers (aka / formerly Bureau) ::
21 September 2006 / The Roadhouse / Manchester
By JA

Any trip to the HIGH VOLTAGE night is a worthy experience. Less an institution more a culture - and very much proof, that positive energies and the results of such, can be channelled through an enthusiastic belief in good music. The end result ? – an evening that combines a good old night at the disco with the latest tunes (in real rock and roll fashion, the first band wasn’t on until 11pm) with the latest display in fashion and hairstyles. Past my own better years, it‘s good to see a collective presence of well sculptured folk that would make the visual line up of Razorlight – It’s very ‘now’ in some respects, but crucially discerning and that’s what’s really important in many instances in establishing, creating and maintaining a scene.

But onto the reason for being here, which is to follow up on an impressive listen to the Bureau’s new single on High Voltage Sounds, which is being launched tonight.

Bureau are / are becoming a very musically powerful band. Against a backdrop of greyly lit band members, Singer Theo Hutchcroft is illuminated and alive with energised rally cries, as he throws shapes and climbs any available cab. There are all sorts of late 70’s references – this is a raw excavation of electro-synth New Wave New Romanticism with guts. There’s the odd line from Gary Numan, a bit of gliding Duran guitar and keyboard and plenty of gutsy rock mixed with Eurotrash and shoegazed post Factory tunes.

If anything, the disco bounces and commanding vocals of Hutchcroft owe more to Neil Arthur’s Blancmange, as he sparkles and glows, whilst the band keep the beats railed in and muscle in a tight formula of electronic goth disco and impressive hooklines. Bureau definitely have the songs but their ambitions certainly seemed destined for bigger stages – for now my ears ring happily after an explosion of poppy retro beats and blustery, exciting and joyfully thumping music.


Resources:
Bureau MySpace
High Voltage Sounds

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