Fear of Men – West End Centre, Aldershot – 5 March 2016

Fear of Men band Eagulls Brighton band Aldershot SXSW New York

Brighton’s Fear of Men are all set to release their second album – ‘Fall Forever’ – in June and before setting off on a jaunt to SXSW and then New York, they had the opportunity to road-test this new material as they supported Eagulls on a run of gigs that took in some towns and cities that are often missed out on national tours.

Covered in a white sheet that added an extra layer of mystery to the band’s already compelling, shoegazey sound, Jessica Weiss’ tender vocals wrapped around the opening new song ‘Island’ and already the crowd were captivated. The sheet only stayed on for this one song as the band grew in confidence as they played mainly new material. With a dark edge, Jessica has claimed the new songs are ‘very personal’ and that she’s tried to avoid hiding behind metaphors – this become abundant with songs covering topics of fear and seemingly loneliness.

Cloaked with modest electronica and plenty of effects from various pedals, there is a touch of Bat for Lashes or All We Are in Fear of Men’s blend of dream-pop while there’s also a hint of the C90-loving atmosphere of The Pains of Being Pure at Heart running throughout. Although there was not much chat between songs other than some very grateful appreciation, this did not matter – Fear of Men let their music do the talking.

Dark, contemporary and always captivating, Fear of Men have a sound that is built for a live setting and it perfectly segued with the more frenetic sound of Eagulls. Already things seem to be building on the success of ‘Loom’ and it seems like there are big things ahead for 2016. We can’t wait to see what happens next.

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