Bath Pavillion, May 1st

Stagecraft. Charisma. Presence. Call it what you want but singer Sian has it in spades. Dance moves apart, she's a hell of a focal point.

I shoudn't like Kosheen. Slick, chart orientated dance music, a million miles away from the underground techno I used to lose myself to every weekend. I've avoided them until very recently, when I heard "Resist" for the first time. And tonight I leave my preconceptions at the door and simply sit back and enjoy the show.

Bath Pavillion is a strange venue. On previous visits here I have seen Oasis and the Fields Of The Nephilim (don't knock 'em, they were awesome!), and attended the black-tie Jazz Festival Ball. it's oversized village hall atmosphere does rock bands no favours, but Kosheen are really surfing a wave of hometown goodwill tonight, and everybody seems to be having a great time.

Combining rock music and dance music is a difficult trick to pull off. For every Prodigy, Underworld or Leftfield, there's a load of bands who never manage to pull it off. But, Kosheen, whilst maybe not the most credible act, have had massive commercial success with radio-friendly tracks such as "Hide U" and "Catch". Their debut album "Resist", with it's heavy drum & bass leanings, and more rock oriented follow up "Kokopelli" show that they have a knack for creating dance music that can move your heart as well as your feet.

Tonight's set has few, if any, low points. Sian holds your attention, moving theatrically amongst the shafts of light and dry ice, her amazingly clear, powerful voice dominating proceedings. The standout tracks for me are "(Slip & Slide) Suicide", "Hungry", "Face In The Crowd" and "All In My Mind", but really it's a seamless set from beginning to end.

And I didn't even know they were from my home town. Something else to be proud of Bristol for.

Richy [ May 3rd, 2004 ]

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