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- 100 Club, London »
Touring their extremely good and many-layered debut LP Miracle Kicker, Dark Captain Light Captain appear to have grown not only in number (from two to six) but also in dynamic range. Their sound was once almost tiny - not in any way wimpish - but certainly not as explosive as they now seem. The nucleus still appears to be original duo Dan Carney and Neil Kleiner, however, pulsing and juddering respectively at the sweltering and very crimson 100 Club.
The majority of Miracle Kicker is aired this evening, with the particularly jaunty 'Jealous Enemies' standing out (and garnering a bizarre wailing sing-along). Because of the intricacy of the band’s material, some clarity is lost in the mix and Kleiner’s electronic noodlings seem a little under-represented (and what happened to the clarinet?!), but this is ably compensated by the new verve their live show has gained. They sweat and shudder an awful lot, resulting in such athletic kineticism as to render all memory of the recordings, for the time being, void.
Heroically, a substantial amount of the intricacy and consideration that makes those recordings special is found amongst this relative chaos. Dan Carney’s guitar lines are woven delicately amongst the occasional fury of the rest of his band, but never resulting in the muddying of a gesture. 'Robot Command Centre' and B-side 'Mid-Session Interval' see DCLC at the closest to their original two-piece incarnation.
It is because of this duality, the detail vs the energy and vice-versa, that the band succeeds in a live setting. One step too far into either camp might derail the whole operation, and it is to their credit that this never once happens tonight.