Mutual Benefit, Seoul, Prehistoric Friends at Mono, 21/5/14

You’d be forgiven for having only just having latched on to Mutual Benefit, it’s very unlikely his music reached much of Glasgow before latest album Love’s Crushing Diamond had a mini explosion causing it to be one of, it not the biggest success of the bandcamp releasing generation.

Tonight it’s the quaint open and frankly charming spaces of Mono that hosts the at times cringingly awkward yet at others alarmingly beautiful act.

However before Jordan Lee and his band take the stage there’s time for local lo-fi pop merchants Prehistoric Friends to have a shot.

The duo turned full band create a whimsical and settling atmosphere as Liam Chapman tries his luck from the front rather than behind the kit, and looks quite at home doing it.

The band is still in its infancy but there’s an array of talent within their ranks and the twinkling charms of single ‘Bermuda Triangle’ have us eager to hear more.

Montreal boys Seoul are up next and they up the tempo a touch, they’re listed as ‘ambient pop’ but they have the most foot tapping elements of the night.

They’re energetic, fun and full of promise; there’s a reason why there’s a deal of enthusiastic comments about these guys circling the web, we’ll be looking out for them in future.

Jordan Lee is clearly over the moon about Mutual Benefit taking off and seems equally enthused by his surroundings; gig venue, bar, food, book and record shop, Mono has it all.

On stage the short and chirpy Lee chats with the crowd plenty but doesn’t really comes across as comfortable in his own skin until he lets the music do the talking.

And when the music is allowed to take centre stage it certainly does, Mutual Benefit may not be devastatingly out of the ordinary in terms of what they do, the format of the songs are fairly simple, but the sheer beauty that Lee and his band manage to conjure is nothing short of impressive.

It appears tonight they’ve fallen on their feet, Mono is perfect venue for this sort of sound, the set is laid back, melancholic and warm, I guess the only thing missing is a log fire to sit round.

More Photos

Words: Iain Dawson
Photos: Beth Chalmers


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