Francis Of Delirium
The Sunflower Lounge
Review by Isabelle Evans
Even in a modern age, where music is primarily consumed online, being a good musician is just as much about being a good performer as it is about creating good music and proficiently playing. This past Friday I had the pleasure to watch four different bands that were all talented performers when I went to see Francis Of Delirium at The Sunflower Lounge on their UK headline tour.
The night was started off by indie band When Tigers Used To Smoke, who immediately made an impact on me when I heard the beautiful, dreamlike guitar tones. They played their own original music, taking advantage of their two vocalists’ unique and smooth voices, while keeping a fun and light atmosphere with the crowd.
Their music perfectly fit their playing styles, making them so enjoyable to watch, as well as how likeable they came across on stage, joking with each other and clearly enjoying themself when performing. What makes their performance more impressive is that their bassist that night was not their usual bassist, yet despite this they still seemed incredibly well rehearsed. Overall, I would say they were a wonderful opener to the night.
The second band up was Alice Lily, a five-piece from Birmingham. Immediately, it jumped out to me how good of performers they all were and how much they enjoyed their time on stage. Even when they started off with their slower songs the crowd was still dancing and being involved in the performance, especially with their immediate audience interaction such as encouraging everyone in the room to move closer to the stage after their first song.
It was clear that the audience was having a good time, especially when the more upbeat songs began and when they played their unreleased song, which sounded slightly heavier than the rest of their set, you could see people dancing and banging their heads. They were another amazing choice for a support act.
Onto Sloe Noon, a Germany based band making a mix of alternative rock and dream pop who have been the support for Francis Of Delirium for the entirety of their UK tour. Their set began with a fairly relaxed song, easing us into their uniquely beautiful style of music before bringing in heavier instrumentation. When the heavier section started the crowd interaction and atmosphere got incredibly elevated, there was so much energy in the room.
What added to this was how much the whole band performed, they jumped around and they interacted with each other and showed how much they were enjoying themselves. It was so obvious that they just love performing and they were having the time of their lives and that energy was so infectious, it led perfectly into the headlining act.
After those openers I had high hopes for Francis Of Delirium, that night’s headliner, an indie rock band based in Luxembourg and those hopes were met. If I had to describe them I would call them natural performers, every single person on that stage was just so entrancing to watch and it seemed like the music came naturally to them. They had the same infectious energy that Sloe Noon had and it resulted in the audience jumping up and down and dancing, there was such an electric atmosphere the whole set.
When the band encouraged everyone to join in singing during the bridge of ‘Let It All Go’ it was clear how invested the audience were in this performance, it was a very powerful moment to hear. This was only beaten during their final song ‘Quit Fucking Around’ in which they had the whole audience screaming the title phrase after teaching everyone the way it was sung in the chorus before the song. It is extra moments like these which really build up a connection between those performing and those being performed to.
I cannot talk about Francis Of Delirium without discussing how much emotion they perform with. For example, with Jana Bahrich (the vocalist and guitarist) and her vocals. With every song there was so much emotion in the way she sang, it was as if you could feel those emotions with her. This just made the gig so much more moving.
Every band was amazing and brought something completely unique to the gig and I would love to see any of them performing again. I am just hoping Francis Of Delirium do not wait too long to visit Birmingham again as I cannot wait to watch them perform again.