Psapp, Meltdown Festival, review: David Byrne's pick are full of charming quirks

Everyday objects and children’s toys add something different to their sound

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The Independent Culture

Meltdown curated by David Byrne was always going to be interesting. Supported by Stealing Sheep, the psychedelic pop band currently rounding off a successful festival circuit, Psapp’s eclectic bunch of characters are on fine form, channelling Byrne's energy for an impressive set.

Veering all the way back to their 2004 debut Tiger, My Friend for “Caruncula”, with its juddering beat, click-clacks and beats, and “Leaving In Coffins”, the band are an engaging presence. Galia Durant’s wonderful, throaty vocals and quirky humour are a delight to witness live: she sings “I Want That” with the instant gratification it needs, and themes of lust and longing run throughout.

A newcomer might think that the range of sounds the band create, along with their mannerisms onstage, would cause their music to seem incoherent. But percussion remains tight, violin notes are clean and pure, and plastic chickens are used at precisely the right moment.

With a slideshow comprised of single words and childhood photos stuttering along in the background, they use everyday objects and children’s toys to add something different to their sound. These artists hear music emerge from the strangest places and translate it, into something that can be savoured and digested by their audience.