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Indie Music Promotion: The Airborne Toxic Event; White Belt Yellow Tag

Updated on August 8, 2011

Indie Music Promotion: White Belt Yellow Tag

This is an indie music promotion for the The Airborne Toxic Event and White Belt Yellow Tag. I am writing this in a non-paid capacity and as someone independent of the music promotion. Essentially this is a gig review as White Belt Yellow Tag supporting The Airborne Toxic Event. In watching how well a band sizes up live, it is a good indication of how they fair in the studio. In this instance tThe gig took place at the Anson Rooms in Bristol on the 8th November 2009.

New up and coming band, White Belt Yellow Tag, appeared to be well received by the small accumulating audience. Signed up with Distiller Records with Broken Records, they aren't greatly known as yet. However, as a warm up band, seemed to be doing exactly as written on the tin, packaged white belt yellow tag!

Indie Band Promotion: White Belt Yellow Tag; You're Not Invincible

Nodding Toe Tapping Beats With The Editor's Style

People were nodding and toe tapping to the beats. The drummer, Tom Bellamy, concentrated intently to his tight timing with similar beats associated with Doves. Sweat pored from his head as he mightily hit those drums with those hands and muscled arms. He seemed to keep his nerves under control as he bashed in rhythm with guitarist, Justin Lockery.

The style here was similar to Editors although not as complex. However, the affect did create an impact on their ‘loud/soft’ style. Guitarist, Justine Lockery, bashed those strings in time with those pounding drumbeats. It looked as though he was driving at concrete as if in a chain gang. This produced an explosive sound.

Craig Pilbin, vocals, guitar and keyboard, diverted from one instrument to another. His voice wasn’t strong enough, to hear much of the lyrics, but his guitar ability showed more complexity than his fellow band member.

This three-piece band has much potential and could become the next White Lies should their songs gather momentum. White Belt Yellow Tag are a band that demonstrates what indie music should be.

Indie Music Promotion: Remains; White Belt Yellow Tag

The Airborne Toxic Event In Concert
The Airborne Toxic Event In Concert

Indie Music Promotion: The Airborne Toxic Event

This is an independent indie music promotion for the Airborne Toxic Event. I have been watching Airborne for a couple of years now. This incidently is the same amount of time that they have been touring.

This night’s performance in Bristol was their 200th this year. It was their second time in Bristol – their first performance was at the Cooler with some dozen attendees, announced the lead singer. This night the Anson Rooms were ¾ full and not a sell out gig. It might be that the Airborne Toxic Event are losing their hold in the American indie music scene.

If you are not acquainted with The Airborne Toxic Event and you like Arcade Fire, you may draw on comparisons here. They are a five-piece band, featuring drummer, Daren Taylor, viola/backing vocals/keyboardist, Anna Bulbrook and bassist/double bass, Noah Harmon. Multi-taskers also include Steven Chen (guitar/keyboards) and Mikel Jollet (vocals/guitar/keyboards). The members all work together to help provide a big orchestral sound.

The audience cheered enthusiastically as the band come onto the stage - they have built up quite a following since their performance on the David Letterman show and their appearances on the festival circuit. I was honoured to meet them after their performance at the Latitude Festival and what a nice bunch of guys they seem to be!

A tight drumbeat echoed from its high platform, behind it, a large backdrop. This artwork depicted hundreds of people, possibly crowded at a festival, with their eyes blanked out. Below the drum kit, the Airborne Toxic Event presented their show with two large visual screens. These showed scenes, amongst others, of traffic jams under streetlights, and fish net stocking tops being pulled up and down legs. This was quite an arty visual affect. However, this band is quite an arty, visual band!

The Airborne Toxic Event covered tracks from their debut album of the same, plus a couple teasers from their yet-to-be-released new album. By what was heard, the style and sound appears similar quality to their debut. However there are no whispers of when this will be recorded as yet. We shall have to wait a while for that indie music promotion to flourist!

Melodic ‘Something New’ is about living in an area of social deprivation – drugs, junkies, debt, one night stands, fighting and ‘blood soaked hands’ and looking for something new. Although the subject matter may be thought of as depressing, the tune is consistently upbeat and hopeful.

The Airborne Toxic Event - Sometime Around Midnight

Indie Music Promotion: Happiness is Overrated; The Airborne Toxic Event

Indie Music Promotion: The Airborne Toxic Event; Gasoline

Popular with the audience, ‘Sometime Around Midnight’ produced a sing-a-long reaction. With Nick Hayward ‘Fantastic Day’ type guitar rifts on the build up, Jollit’s voice starts softly, becoming more passionate and ending with shear anger. He tells the story of a past love encountered in a pub, the jealousy and fury that is felt when the old lover leaves with another man.

As the song builds up, there is euphoric passion from the soul of the violin. Bulbrook sensually demonstrates this with and without said instrument throughout the performance but particularly with this song. It is, therefore, a very emotional song, starting softly and ending with great energy. This is typical of the style of music by the Airborne Toxic Event. I remember that this was an indie music promotion song on the Late Night Show and is clearly a winner by the reaction of the audience.

An anticipated audience awaits the singer to finish his slow introduction to ‘Happiness is Over Rated’. As he teased the audience, as if he knew that everyone knew this song, he mouthed the words.. ‘as losing you, is something I always…’ leaving a gap of silence for the anticipated ‘Did so well!’ Obviously with a sense of humour, a big grin stretched over his face. The audience knew the words and this must have given Jollit a sense of satisfaction as he entered into the anthemic section of the song.

The ‘Gasoline’ performance was another popular favourite. This has been around for sometime with exposure on Fifa 09 and now with its inclusion on Band Hero. The performance and song was abundant with energy. It is about adolescent sexuality and masturbation. The band members utilised the stage, climbed up the platform and interacted musically with each other.

‘Innocence’ was the last song to be performed before the encore. Not many people are familiar with the long live introduction and so when the main component of the song started with the violin, guitar intro and military drum beats, folk started to move and dance. As a popular track, this was a nice surprised to the uninitiated. This started slowly but ended with loud high energy. A song about losing virginity and feelings associated with this was a fitting to end the set. The weaving in and out from the sound of the violin added a dimension of sorrow and regret.

After much ‘wahooing’ and ‘more, more’ from the audience, the band re-immersed for the encore. Unfortunately, when announced that a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s ‘I’m On Fire’ members of the audience booed. However, in my view, the performance was quite good and their version bettered the original.

The track ‘Missy’ ended their performance. There was a whisper to Chen, who at this point was on keyboards and then to Bulbrook whilst chasing her, she shook the tambourine. They looked like they had enjoyed the gig and, by the looks of many happy faces, so did the audience.

This is an indie music promotion. It is an independent review of the Airborne Toxic Event by an unpaid music critic. The idea and views of the author attempts to be objective in the realms of dark indie - I hope that this has been achieved. However, I always appreciate constructive critism and should you wish to do this, please feel free to comment. If you liked this, it is helpful if you would rate this article up and share the love via links below the thumb!

This work is covered under Creative Commons License

Indie Music Promotion: Gasoline

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    • shazwellyn profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Great Britain

      Thanks hon. I didn't think that this would be your bag man?! Are you into indie music?

      Thanks for giving it a go x

    • aware profile image

      Raymond Williams 

      9 years ago from Westpalmbeach

      Im picking hubs to read by people,that i follow . Im going tru and picking ones that havent been commented on yet. So i pick this one for that and also cause the subject matter appealed to me . And i dug it . Good job.




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