Cellar Darling – Jazz Cafe, London – 31st March 2019

First up tonight were Swiss band Appearance of Nothing. Due to train delays I arrived part of the way through their set. It’s good Prog metal with some great guitar riffs. Toward the end of their set they were joined on stage by Celar Darling’s Anna Murphy who added her vocals to a song. Once she left the stage the singer did his thanks and then decided to make his girlfriend come up on stage too, at which point he went down on one knee and proposed to her (she said yes). They finished the set with one final song. An enjoyable performance.

Nex tup was Blanket – a band from Blackpool. They’re a fairly new band, having released their debut EP in 2017 and their debut album in May 2018. They’re certainly different musically but I’m stil not sure what to make of them. At times a song sounded great but then it would change partway through or be followed by something very different. One song started off really well with some nice Black Sabbath sounding riffs but then as soon as he started singing it rapidly changed the whole feel of the song. The whole set just felt too mixed as though they haven’t quite found a consistent sound and stuck to it. Definitely a mixed set with some good bits and some bad.

Finally it was time for Cellar Darling. One thing that was quite noticeable from the start was that Anna Murphy seems a lot more comfortable as frontwoman than she did in the past. She’s clearly fairly shy and in the past has talked to the audience as little as possible but tonight she seemed far more confident – the busy touring schedule clearly having an impact.
Despite having a new album (The Spell) having come out just a week earlier, the first part of the set was very familiar to fans as it was made up of songs from the first album (This is the sound). “Avalanche” in particular is a strong song that does down well. After five songs from the first album the band switched to the new album for the rest of the set. It’s a fairly dark album – as Anna Murphy comments at one point, “It’s a bit depressing really”, and with limited changes in pace and the droning of the hurdy gurdy it’s not the most spellbinding show I’ve seen although I did still enjoy it. Overall it’s a good set but possibly suffered slightly with seven new songs that people hadn’t had much time to get to know and love. Cellar Darling played the smaller Boston music rooms last year, so it’s good to see them playing a bigger venue this time, and I suspect it won’t be long before they move up to even larger venues.

Set list:

Black Moon
Six Days
The Spell
Love Pt. II

The Prophet’s Song (Queen cover)

About Ant May

I spend half my life at gigs or festivals and the other half writing the reviews and editing photos, and somehow find time for a full time job too. Who needs sleep - I've got coffee.