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Gig Review: Curse of Lono at The Underbelly, Hoxton.
In the underside of Hoxton Square, Curse of Lono played The Underbelly on 25th February as part of Success Express Presents. The 5-piece band from London filled Underbelly’s small stage as the crowd filled the room, making for a packed out venue.
Overcoming some technical issue, many hands clasped to ears to protect them from the squealing feedback, Curse of Lono eased into their set for the evening. Starting slow and building, Curse of Lono have a Southern Country sound, mixed with an Alt-Rock overtone, culminating in an atmospheric sound with the ability to surge and fall with ease.
Lead guitarist Joe Hazell seems to have a large effect on the band’s sound, swapping between acoustic resonator and electric guitar, incorporating slide to give a greater bluegrass feel. In particular, in the more upbeat songs, Joe’s solo’s on his iconic white Fender Strat were met with applause for good reason. These solo efforts brought an energy to the tunes, really propelling them forward and grabbing the attention of the audience at the same time.
A note on the audience however. There was a lot of talking, and loud talking at that, whilst the band were playing. This did take away from the spectacle, since the bands performance was always accompanied by a loud sound of chatter. This could be taken as a sign that the performance was not engaging the crowd, but there was large applause after every song, and the band were definitely on form. The often seemed to be that any of the crowd were more interested in drinking than the band on stage.
Aside from this, Curse of Lono put on a great performance, harnessing their country esc sound to great effect. Versatile, interesting, and obviously talented, Curse of Lono overcame various obstacles to deliver an enjoyable performance to a sometimes not entirely appreciative crowd, but more credit to them for it.