Photo Credit: Steph Wilson
LUMP—the collaboration between British singer-songwriter Laura Marling and multi-instrumentalist Mike Lindsay—performed a wonderfully psychedelic set at London’s Scala venue on the 6th of September. This was the final stop of a short UK tour which coincided with the release of the band's recent record, Animal. Dressed in frilly, flower-like lace and basking in the glow of constantly changing, colourful lights and fog machine smoke, the set’s vibe was highly reminiscent of a scene out of A Midsummer Night's Dream (one of the songs on Animal is even titled 'Oberon').
And, if someone were to say that Laura Marling’s angelic voice belonged to a magic, fairy-like creature, honestly I might be tempted to believe them. Marling’s voice was soft yet not weak; vulnerably gentle, yet clearly trained and expertly controlled. It soared throughout the packed venue, allowing LUMP’s brilliant lyricism to truly shine through.
But it was not just Marling’s impressive vocal performance that made the show. Mike Lindsay, along with the other members of the band, played with otherworldly proficiency. Switching between both synths and guitars, Lindsay’s tone was often strange in the best possible way. As a pedal-obsessed guitarist, I spent much of the set unsuccessfully trying to figure out how Mike Lindsay could manage to make the sounds he created. Lindsay’s tone was unlike anything I’ve heard at a live show before, and it gave his already incredible and unique playing style even more distinctive colour. Lindsay simultaneously played his pedals as though they themselves were instruments, adding long oscillating trails which added to the music’s sense of psychedelia.
LUMP’s performance at the Scala was a truly unforgettable one. When the show ended, I felt as though I would gladly stand there listening to LUMP for hours more. In fact, my one complaint about the show is that I feel it could have been longer. With no supporting act or encore, I was left wanting a bit more music. The crowd seemed to feel agree, as we all stood there waiting for an encore that didn’t come. Still, LUMP gave one of the best and most memorable shows I have seen, and I would gladly go and see them again.