Maud in Cahoots: Live at The Ferocious Mingle Marcade – Review

MaudinCahoots_bannerMaud in Cahoots at The Ferocious Mingle Market: May 9th 2013

I hadn’t heard of The Ferocious Mingle Market recently, I had been walking up Thomas Street, a bloke in front of me suddenly stopped and turned to an entrance where a man, I presumed a bouncer, was standing. I wondered what was going on in there. Fast forward a little while and I too was entering this mysterious place for a special event. Maud in Cahoots‘ Dance With Me single launch.

Upon entering the cavernous venue, you realize that this is something quite special. A market with alongside a coffee shop boasts vintage, millinery and jewellery shops carefully packed away for tonight’s musical event. Cleverly and in theme with the video for the single people are slow dancing around the venue. While it seems the venue maybe long and narrow, once the band come to the stage, there’s a nice area in front of the stage which accommodated the 50 or so invited guests comfortably.

Maud in Cahoots are a curious entity. Fronted by sisters Maud (vocals/violin) and Zoe Reardon (cello) they have been described as ‘alternative pop’, while they do play intelligent, grown up pop music, they are backed up by instrumentation normally associated with a classical ensemble Yes, they have a bass player, an electric guitar, keys and a drummer and we’re familiar with a string section filling and rounding out the sound in pop songs, but they are joined but a tuba and briefly a trumpet.

An intimate show like this will obviously have friends of the band in the audience and this breaks the tension and makes Maud, who is doing the talking, a little more at ease, as she explains she was told to ‘tell anecdotes’ before saying ‘I’m not very good at this’. While she may not be entirely comfortable with in between song chat, Maud more than makes up for it with her vocal performance.

The band begin with ‘Breakdown’ and sets the tone for the rest of their short set. It’s dramatic, soulful, fantastically arranged and beautifully brought to life onstage with passion and vigor. ‘Make Me Right’ sees the trumpet introduced and from here it’s easy to see why their style of pop could fall under the ‘baroque pop’ moniker. The track rises and falls in what seems similar to classical movements. Maud comments that the track is the B side to Dance with Me and she’s right, it’s every bit as good as the A side.

Maud sits on the edge of the stage asking the audience if that’s OK. There’s a piano at the back of the stage and the notes start to fill the room. The other Cahoots begin slow dancing on the stage as Maud sings a hauntingly spellbinding version of Robyn’s ‘Dancing On My Own’. Immense.

The assembled crowd show their appreciation and how good the cover was. The applause lingers, allowing the band to regroup as Maud announces ‘This is the single’. With the band in full flow, ‘Dance with me’ is danced to onstage and off. Its catchy, memorable and easy to sing along to as the audience proved. Great performance, great sound. Maud in Cahoots keep it short and sweet, giving enough to tempt you, enough for you to get to know them but leave you wanting more.

Maud In Cahoots have a great sound and are different to a lot of acts on the music scene. If they keep up with performances and songwriting of this standard, they’ll definitely be one to keep an eye on.

Photos taken with my phone..

Here’s the vid for Dance With Me.