Deaf Havana at Islington Assembly Hall 23.11.15

So this would be my third time seeing the Norfolk boys. There’s a reason I keep coming back.

Islington Assembly Hall is a small venue in Islington high street. From the outside it looks like a museum and before the crowds started pouring in, I sort of felt like I was at a school disco. But that’s what sort of made it feel amazing. It felt like I was experiencing it for the first time, falling in love with a band for the first time.

Openers were Twin Wild. Really new kids on the block, but not even slightly disappointing. They’re quite Imagine Dragons meets Lonely the Brave. You can find them over on Spotify or both singles are on iTunes. Both of which I am now a proud and adoring owner of. They’ve got big plans for the upcoming year and I’d be chuffed to see them do a full set.

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Next were seasoned support acts, The Xcerts. Only having heard She before, I recognised them but wasn’t sure. Since checking them out at home I would say their new album There Is Only You is worth a listen. Probably not sell-out-venue material themselves just yet, but well on their way.
Then, from the teasers comes James Veck-Gilodi with a single guitar and a soulful rendition of The Past Six Years before the rest of the band appeared and launched fiercely into the version we all know and love. They’re the most relatable and real band I’ve ever seen, singing about being drunk and fucking up a little bit here and there. They’re completely unpretentious and utterly awe-inspiring.  It was a perfect blend of old, new, swagger and sound. They showcased never heard before song England and Cassiopeia alongside oldies Smiles All Round and some massive Old Souls tunes.

A undoubted highlight, Saved bleeding into Caro Padre which was almost too much for me to handle. Caro Padre is my favourite Old Souls song by a landslide and Saved is just so emotional. CP built an incredible tension in the small venue and the song crashed out with both Veck-Gilodi brothers on their knees and the entire crowd singing their souls out. They finished on a high with Hunstanton Pier but came back for a three-song encore and a united and unrelenting crowd.

The boys have a very real stage presence, cheeky, charismatic and making my 5″2 counterpart squeal about her ovaries. They casually chat away to the audience, like they’re talking to friends, cocky but humble.Their small UK tour was to restore all our faith that they would be releasing new stuff soon. I was absolutely gutted they didn’t play my favourite Fifty Four. But undoubtedly, there will be a next time.

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UK Student and Lifestyle Blogger. Coffee Snob. Adventure Lover. Book Reader. Gilmore Girls Aficionado.

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