Sunshine-infused Brighton sextet The Go! Team came to visit Nottingham’s Rescue Rooms on their latest tour, after the release of their incredible new album Get Up Sequences Part 2. Not many bands get to album seven, but this stellar performance showed Izzy Morris exactly why they’re still around kicking…
After a week of university related stress, a not so restful reading week and a cold, dreary (and snowy!) start to March, an evening with The Go! Team was always going to be exactly what the doctor ordered. Ever since Get Up Sequences Part 2 (which I also reviewed for Impact, see here!). was released into the world, it’s been on repeat in my headphones, adding a pep in my step to some frosty walks around campus. Offering what I can only call cosmic optimism, I circled my calendar with great enthusiasm, with very high expectations for their live offerings.
Accompanied by my father, also in need of an indie-funk pick-me-up, we entered the venue with passionfruit mocktails from the bar in hand. I was excited to see that the support act was going to be Baba Ali – an ‘electro punk disco’ duo that have been making waves with their stage presence. I’d encountered the duo before, supporting Yard Act at Bodega last year, but I was particularly struck by their performance this time around. My hips were immediately called to action, and remained trapped in movement for their entire set, acting as the perfect warm-up for the main event. I was all loose and stretched out by the end of Baba Ali’s borderline seductive set, packed with impressive electric grooves, and captivating fluid movements from Baba Docherty, the vocalist. I didn’t really strike my Dad as being a Baba Ali fan, however, when I turned to him once they’d left the stage, it appeared their energy had infected him too. The next afternoon, he sent me a picture of his car stereo with Baba Ali’s ‘Nature’s Curse’ playing. ‘He has a new fan’, the accompanying message read.
They have the youthfulness and sense of fun that you’d expect of a ‘school band’, but the age, wisdom and musical technique that you’d expect from a band on album seven
Then it was time for The Go! Team to take to the Rescue Rooms stage. Opening with ‘Let The Seasons Work’, the crowd was instantly transported into their colourful and vibrant world. It was like opening the curtains and letting the light in, as all six band members unleashed their energy for the room to digest. This trumpet heavy track was the perfect choice to get things moving, with a sense of grandiosity and presence that was arresting from the word Go!.
Sometime during their set I heard a comment from a fellow audience member that made me laugh. They observed that the band where ‘the best school band that money can buy’. I chuckled at this, given the fluorescent pink and green recorders that were being used for their popular track ‘Get It Together’, causing Ninja, lead vocalist, to reflect on her school days. ‘When am I ever going to need to know how to play this?’ she asked before launching into the whimsical track. They have the youthfulness and sense of fun that you’d expect of a ‘school band’, but the age, wisdom and musical technique that you’d expect from a band on album seven. They’re a cohesive collective of musical ideas and visions that have changed over the years. This ‘united nations of music’ as Ian Parton, the mastermind behind the project, has been influenced by many different line-up iterations over the years, but it’s clear to see that the collective is every bit as engaging and exciting as they were with album number one, Thunder, Lightning, Strike.
They played a number of tracks from their dazzling debut throughout the night, profusely thanking fans for sticking around for all of these years. There were plenty of audience members quite a bit older than me in the room, that I bet were just as infatuated with the band as I am now when they were my age, back when the debut was released all the way back in 2004. Tracks like ‘Ladyflash’ and ‘Huddle Formation’ brought back a great deal of indie-infused nostalgia for these fans, while newer tracks from the new record like ‘Divebomb’ still managed to produce raucous reactions from the crowd.
During fan-favourite ‘Semicircle Song’, Ninja took a dive into the sea of fans, ordering them not to be afraid of the microphone. Just as is the case in the recording of the song, she asked the room for their name and star sign, which encouraged cheers from different audience members when they had the same. Clambering back onto the stage to perform the song, it was somewhat clear at this stage that there was a problem with some of the bands in-ears, with various gestures being made in an effort to fix them. Niadzi and Ninja shared a knowing look at one point as they worked together in harmony during the song. While it was clear that they were experiencing this challenge, this did not stop their cohesiveness as a group, still delivering an incredible performance.
My favourite track of the night appeared in the band’s encore; ‘Whammy-O’, which admittedly was already a highlight for me from the new record, completely and utterly knocked my socks off. Ninja’s incredible charisma and prowess as a rapper combined with leaping and jumping from the other band members with their guitars and a blasting trumpet line, the track reignited the fire within all of us that the band had been fanning all night. Closing with their classic hit ‘T.O.R.N.A.D.O.’, I left the building with a new lease of life (and a badge, and a t-shirt).
Featured image courtesy of Alex Watkin. Permission to use granted to Impact. No changes were made to this image.
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