The Victoria – May 5th

Baby in Vain’s recording process often involves tracking guitars and drums simultaneously, hearing them live it becomes clear why they take this approach. In the absence of bass, the crash of symbols sit alongside distorted guitars as if they were two sides of the same instrument. And this, combined with their soft/loud approach, feels like a car coming full speed towards you through a glass shop front.

The support this evening is the equally vicious Husky Loops, a stylish 3-piece hailing from Italy who waste no time in silencing the hubbub of the gloomy back room at The Victoria. ‘Excited? Good. Let’s go UK style’ the lead singer, Danio, smirks before tearing into their jagged single, ‘Dead’, whose opening riff is reminiscent of Manchester’s Dutch Uncles. Husky Loops’ catchy, aggressive tunes pay homage to the best guitar bands of the 00’s without being just a tiresome exercise in revivalism. A playful sample of a Spotify advert loops and depletes, reinforcing the suspicion that this band aims to mirror (or parody) today’s skip-happy listening habits. They end on a brief instrumental leaving all expecting, and wanting to hear more.

The gloom that resumes following Husky Loops’ set is immediately lifted once Baby in Vain take to the stage and launch into ‘Martha’s View’. This is the first track off of BIV’s new EP For The Kids, released via Partisan records on April 29th, and makes for a mighty opener both live and on record. Live, the track is even weightier, and seeing Lola Hammerich and Andrea Thuesen casually shredding at the close of the song reminds us all why the young Danish trio have been turning heads for a while.

The audience is given some respite from the onslaught of colliding riffs when the band play the penultimate track from their EP ‘The Urge’. This song presents a change in sound for the band, and came about after their producer suggested swapping one of the guitars with synth bass. The chugging synth line houses a sinister yet sweet vocal melody and reminds you that Baby In Vain cite 00’s pop as well as Sabbath among their influences.

After supporting The Kills for several dates across Europe, ending with a sold out show at London’s Village Underground, Baby In Vain are justifiably feeling slightly under the weather this evening. Despite this, or perhaps because of it, nearly every song in their headline set is delivered with considerable ease, adding gravitas to their weighty riffs.

Thanking their support, they end without encore even though it’s called for, which seems fitting given that nearly every one of Baby in Vain’s songs was delivered with the full force of a finale this evening.

Listen: Baby in Vain – For The Kids