Live Review: Telegram, Old Blue Last, London (24/06/13)


The Old Blue Last, an old-fashioned pub and music venue in Shoreditch, East London, is hosting a series of pre-parties before East End Live. The rapidly rising Telegram certainly made this a party.

Telegram started receiving attention after a BBC 6Music session with Marc Riley last month, during which many were startled at how such a young band could already sound so fully-formed. Originally from Wales, but now playing most of their gigs across East London, Telegram have found friends in fellow psych-garage stars, Toy and Charlie Boyer & The Voyeurs, the latter of which gave a DJ set between bands at Old Blue Last.

Their sound is, interestingly, placed almost directly between Toy and The Voyeurs. There is the sprawling wall of noise guitar that we’d associate with Toy, but also the 70s art-punk of The Voyeurs, with their loud basslines and biting vocals.

The stand-out song of the band’s short set is most definitely ‘Follow’. It is pretty raw rock n roll, incorporating all of the genre’s necessities: a huge riff, a catchy chorus and a great final minute freak-out. Other set highlights included the laidback pyschedelia of ‘Eons’ and the heavier, more proggy ‘Folly’. A slight criticism could be that there was little variation between the songs, but then again, why fix it if it ain’t broke?

Despite the absurdly-priced beer (£4.40 a pint anyone?) and the temperamental lighting, the East London crowd, made up of young fans and the simply curious, left the venue very satisfied in the knowledge that they’d just witnessed the beginning of Telegram’s long, and likely very successful, journey.

Shoreditch and its surrounding areas are often criticised for their artsy pretentiousness. Like it or not, however, the psych/garage music scene here is most definitely buzzing, with many bands, like Telegram, following in the wake of scene leaders The Horrors, Toy and Charlie Boyer & The Voyeurs, amongst others.

Despite being an exceptionally new band, Telegram appear to have it all. They’ve got the look, the friends and most importantly, the songs. Make sure you watch out for them in the very near future.

Alex Neely

…Alex is listening to Loom – ‘I Get A Taste’…


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