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Live Review: Catcall & Forces

18 December 2012 | 9:28 am | Adam Curley

Yes, Catcall get fan drawings because they make live music for misfits, and the misfits like to dance.

The T-shirts say it all: one Boy London, one the logo for DIY label Nihilistic Orbs. FORCES occupy a space somewhere between. The recurring comparison is with The Presets, primarily due to a perceived potential for the local duo to go from small clubs to, well, wherever they want with their stomping, mechanical madness. It's a fool's decision to predict such things, but it can be said that FORCES aren't playing The Presets' game. This is no striptease performed by aloof everymen. Theirs is a knowing theatricality. They slap round sunglasses on 'über'-dark beats, extra effects in corners of their rattling tracks where there seems no room for more. Like all good theatre of its type, it's ridiculously exciting.

They're an interesting support for Catcall because Catherine Kelleher walks her show down the other side of the road. They pass each other somewhere along the way. Catcall's debut album, The Warmest Place, and its long run of lead-in singles found champions from all parts by pushing Kelleher's punk instincts into the mould of pop theatre. With the exception of remixes, her recordings are hi-fi-with-heart. Live, Catcall is a different prospect, mostly because Kelleher can't help but be anything but herself. In a glittered cape, flanked by producer Andrew Elston (aka Toni Toni Lee) and Palms/Straight Arrows guitarist Al Grigg, Kelleher turns space-funk album song Shoulda Been into a breathless post-punk number, even with the slick backing and vocal harmony samples.

Though her voice broadens through the set, the notes getting bolder and longer, it remains a raw energy in the songs. Perfectly so. Kelleher throws her body into it, too. Swimming Pool becomes a rhythmic thrust as it warps into the chanted chorus of TLC's No Scrubs. On My Own, dreamlike on record, is reinterpreted as a nicely scratchy indie-rock epic thanks to Grigg's riffing. The World Is Ours is a one-two punch. It's quite removed from the recorded experience, which might explain why the audience is a motley crew. Earlier in the night a fan handed Kelleher a drawn portrait. Yes, Catcall get fan drawings because they make live music for misfits, and the misfits like to dance.