the bass rumbles in the garden of Eden

Eden Sessions 2012 review

published: Mon 9th Jul 2012

Chase and Status (2)

Saturday 23rd June to Wednesday 11th July 2012
Eden Project, Bodelva, St Austell, Cornwall, PL24 2SG, England MAP
special offer £20
daily capacity: 6000
last updated: Fri 29th Jun 2012

'Bubbles, there are bubbles everywhere' a young girl shrieked as she ran past me down towards the venue. Biomes are their official term I believe, giant plastic structures which house plants from around the world, which by day is one of Eden Projects primary functions. They look magnificent, futuristic, creative, unexpected – just what you want when raving the night away, a surreal, dramatic backdrop and no matter how busy it is you feel close to the band and always seem to have a great view. Although the Eden Project is probably the furthest south you will see a big band in England, residing in a secret valley in the Cornish countryside it still manages to frequently fill its 6000 capacity venue with punters keen to see its musical offerings.

Chase and Status (1)
Chase & Status have toured intensely in the last few years carving a name with their cutting edge drum & bass and dubstep offerings that place them alongside the likes of The Prodigy, Chemical Brothers and Pendulum and with a largely sequenced set they are unlikely to sound anything less than excellent through a quality sound system. The danger of this means that a live performance can be too similar to the album experience and so they have included the use of a projection screen, guitarist, an MC and a drummer with a wonderfully created kit housing electronic cymbals hanging above his head.

Chase and Status (1)
A 9pm start means that it is still light when they take to the stage which immediately reduces the impact of the screens and lighting but helps give the gig that festival feel. Opening with 'No Problem', the first track on their most recent album 'No More Idols', the crowd are delighted from the first note and the bars and toilet queues empty rapidly and the venue fills. nsurprisingly Chase & Status sets tend to begin with the low tempo dubstep numbers that feature heavy bass that tonight reverberates and bounces in the valley with the stomping beats that MC Rage screams that we bounce to. We oblige him,how can we resist these infectious giants of the modern music scene.

As the sky darkens the pace quickens and the atmosphere intensifies and the band play more and more of the current album in exactly the same way it is arranged on the album (take a lesson from Chemical Brothers or Depeche Mode please boys,) which is not only a disappointment but indicates that this may be over in quick time (less than an hour and a quarter it turned out) but for now we enjoy what is in front of us.

Chase and Status (2)
Storming through the material we hear 'Brixton Briefcase', 'Blind Faith', 'End Credits', 'Pieces' and 'Let You Go' with no guest vocalist which is a big disappointment but hardly surprising given the huge names they have appearing on their album and the album tour for 'More Than Alot' was a far more satisfying experience. 'Brixton Briefcase' is a rather dull song on the album and to play it live without Cee Lo Green really did seem pointless indeed.

As the band leave the stage for the first time we have heared no new material, perhaps reports of a third album in production perhaps teased us into the expectation of hearing new material but alas they weren't forthcoming. They did however play an interesting cover. It takes a lot of courage to cover an anthemic song such as Rage Against the Machine's 'Killing in the Name' but they played a fantastic version staying fairly true to the original rather than choosing to remix it beyond a respectful level. I can't help but wonder if it was a response to the criticism they received for their headline status at Download festival but either way the audience went crazy.

For the finale of this frenetic set they played 'Fool Yourself' building the set into a intense, if a little short, crescendo leaving the audience mildly disappointed at the length of what was nonetheless an entertaining set. At a ticket of £25 pounds those that could stick around the next day are granted free entry into the Eden Project which really is a decent deal and there are still a few Eden Sessions left this year enchant that secret Cornish valley.

Chase and Status (1)
review by: Richard Potter

photos by: Petra Pastircakova

Saturday 23rd June to Wednesday 11th July 2012
Eden Project, Bodelva, St Austell, Cornwall, PL24 2SG, England MAP
special offer £20
daily capacity: 6000
last updated: Fri 29th Jun 2012


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