After completing their autumn North American tour, a pretty jet lagged Mount Kimbie opened their UK and European half of their tour in Brighton Concorde. The pair were clearly pleased to be back on English soil as Dom (a Brighton boy himself) announced ‘It’s shit and it’s raining but it’s good to be back in Brighton’. The crowd were certainly pleased about their return to the UK, as the venue was full to the brim with eager punters waiting for a night of eclectic and ambient so called post dubstep.
Mount Kimbie demonstrated that they were a band who took visual aesthetics seriously. Throughout their set they streamed photographic images that told a story, capturing the mood of their set perfectly. They seamlessly merged track to track, barely pausing for breath so much so that their set list sounded like one enormous amalgamation of their entire back catalogue.
Stand out track was ‘Home Recording’, the opening track for their new album Cold Spring Fault Less Youth. For me, this track is without a shadow of a doubt the best track on the entire album. The term ‘ambient’ gets thrown around a lot when Mount Kimbie are discussed and this track epitomises and rightly justifies this tendency to describe their sound as ambient.
Seeing these guys live really allowed them to showcase their talent as musicians. Both Dom and Kai played a mixture of live and electronic instruments. It also showed just how much of a team they are. Often with bands it is obvious who essentially carries the whole show but with Mount Kimbie they are both equally talented and equally central to the show. Neither of them felt the need to speak much in between songs. I couldn’t quite work out whether this helped or hindered them. The crowd were clearly appreciative of their set and Mount Kimbie have garnered a dedicated fan base since their first album but I did feel that perhaps a slight moment of crowd interaction would have enhanced their set.
It was a shame that King Krule couldn’t have joined them for their live set to perform the two collaborative tracks, ‘Meter, Pale, Tone’ and ‘You Took Your Time’. I guess this is the down side of any collaborative efforts, as ultimately this may hinder a live performance.
Another stand out track was ‘Break Well’. This is a smouldering slow burner of a track that progressively builds in both pace and intensity. The juxtaposition of the first half of the track and the second half was made all the more effective in the live setting.
I’m not sure how well their music translates to a gig setting. Don’t get me wrong, their music definitely translates well live but I definitely think they would have been far more suited to a club night session than a gig setting. It was an odd sensation being in a crowd that barely moved a muscle when listening to their music. This is not to say that the crowd wasn’t enjoying it, they just weren’t really given the opportunity to physically show their appreciation.
There is no denying Mount Kimbie’s talent. They are definitely worth going to see but if you ever get the chance to see them at a festival or performing at a club night then I urge you to jump at the chance.