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Live Review: The Dum Dum Girls

On Monday night Newcastle played host to the Dum Dum Girls. A 1960s inspired indie pop quartet, with an almost melancholic lo-fi edge. I have been a fan since the He Gets Me High EP and when the band released Only In Dreams earlier this year I knew I had to hear them live.

When Dee Dee, Jules, Bambi and Sandy took to the stage the room was silenced.

The girls were all dressed in black with a little bondage corset here and a fishnet stocking there, but it was front woman Dee Dee who took my breath away. Her arse grazing hot-pants, her signature striped tights – wrapped around thighs that would make Queen of pins Beyonce want to spew herself skinny – made me, along with the rest of the crowd, salivate like Pavlov’s dog.

With such a strong image the band could easily fall foul of the style over substance faux pas, but the songs are brilliantly written and after a problem with the sound is sorted, the vocal harmonies are audible over the slightly grunge guitar riffs. The Dum Dum Girls quite literally blew the doubts from my mind.

Fans of the band will no doubt know that Dee Dee’s mother passed away last year and her death was the main inspiration for Only In Dreams LP. With this knowledge I defy any of you to hear ‘I’m angry I recall your face and now there’s nothing in its place, all that’s left is teardrops on my pillow… where can I go where sorrow will not find me… I wish it wasn’t true, there’s nothing I can do, except hold your hand, to the very end’ without welling up.

It wasn’t all doom and gloom though, old favourites like ‘Jail La La’ and ‘Bhang Bhang’ brought the crowd to life and new tune ‘Always Looking’ is like a brilliant mating of The Cramps and The Shangri-las, and with ‘Bedroom Eyes’ the band were back to their seductive best. For an encore the girls played ‘There is a light that never goes out’ Smiths cover, but they made it very much their own.

My only criticism of the Dum Dum Girls would be that they appear too cool to smile, too hip to feel. Yes, it’s obviously part of their act and a measure to ensure that they retain their mysteriously cool persona, but maybe a little break in their front would reassure the audience that they are allowed to relate to the emotion in the songs and not just the band’s image, but all in all a brilliant night.

-Nicole Morley

4 Comments on “Live Review: The Dum Dum Girls”

  • les November 17th, 2011 10:42 pm

    great review !

  • Rebecca November 18th, 2011 12:54 pm

    Brilliant review. The writer truly portrays the gig. Which is all a reader could wish for (the truth).

  • Nicole Morley November 18th, 2011 6:49 pm

    Rebecca, how embarrassing!

  • Dan November 19th, 2011 9:50 am

    Saw em in manc- solid band. Singer is unreal!

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