Orchid Collective at Whelan’s – Review
Orchid Collective celebrated the release of their new single, ‘Figure It Out’, with a gig in Whelan’s.
With Joey Gavin and We Raise Bears also hitting the stage, we were completely spoiled for choice but I absolutely loved it. Having previously heard some We Raise Bears tracks before, I was interested to see them in a live setting and they didn’t disappoint at all. To be honest, I was actually mesmerized by everything happening on stage, and wondering what instrument would be plucked up next to use. Highlights for me included ‘As The Buzzard Flies’ and ‘State of Discord’, with their haunting vocals really coming to the fore and complementing each other well.
Joey Gavin is quite shy and reserved as he goes through his set, but his deep vocals are certainly unique and slot in nicely among his whole band’s efforts for the set. I loved the quirky instrumental transitions and how we were left guessing as to whether a song was ending or continuing further with some added strings or extra chords.
With a swift changeover out of the way, Orchid Collective showed that they didn’t need any formal introduction, their opening instrumentals bringing the room to attention, with any buzz of chatter fizzing away. To get comparisons out of the way, there is an air of Mumford and Sons-esque qualities to their performance. However if you take Orchid Collective’s song arrangements, harmonies, and overall songwriting skills into consideration, this is a band with a stage presence well beyond the current status of ‘single launch’ stage. Yes it was my first time to see them live, but it’s that kind of sound audiences are loving right now and who are also happily paying extortionate prices to see bands of a similar genre in a live setting.
Their set is fluttered with little gems that I wish had a repeat button. Skilled acoustics being coupled with impressive electro-picking for their newly un-named track are also nicely joined by building drums and smooth bass lines that altogether gel so well and you don’t want it to end. In addition their harmonies form an added layer of genius, especially evident in ‘The Fall’. Considering the night that was in it, the single ‘Figure it Out’ also received a great reception and we all happily clutched our little downloads we’d been given on the way in.
They also sing of wishing ‘we could run and get away, and leave our worries behind for one more day..‘ but to take this out of context from the song, when you go to a gig and instantly forget about everything else that may be happening in your life, that’s when you’re onto a winner. All worries and cares are put on hold, and as you listen to Orchid Collective, that’s exactly what they achieve. Finishing up with a more up-tempo track that really brings the full band capabilities to the fore, I can only see things getting better for them as the year goes on.
Review by Nicole Leggett