It’s not often in Cape Town and the greater Cape area that the music scene expands beyond the usual gig venues. Generally speaking, even when it does expand a bit there is still an air of familiarity.
WORDS: ZACH LEES
PHOTOGRAPHY: (BANDS) DAVID WEIN
PHOTOGRAPHY: (AFTER PARTY) DAVID WEIN
Considering all of this, it was a breath of fresh air when Hyroine decided to host their European Tour fundraising show in an intimate and clean art studio, they even started the event during daylight hours. The stage setup was exciting and new because instead of the usual single stage setup the team had created two smaller stages about 2 meters apart from one another for bands to play on. Half on one stage and the other half on the opposite stage. Guests were welcomed into the space before the bands started playing by Mishaq Diesel playing the drums along to some jazz tracks. A hint at the closeness of the evening to come.
The white studio came as a stark contrast to the usually dark and dingy live music events. The contrast was noticed as the evening progressed and PXLS (who usually play with big, loud sound) adjusted to the setting and brought a softer set to the fans accustomed to their loud presence. The Stellenbosch based band helped ease the crowd into the evening as the sun set out the window and the warmth built inside the studio.
The end of PXLS set was followed by a brief interlude, giving Hyroine and the sound lady Kayla Robinson time to set up the duel stages for the main event. The studio lights were turned off and created a new dark ambiance to let the crowd know the show was about to restart. Hyroine welcomed the night with their usual excellence. A dream inducing musical experience is something we’ve all come to expect from Hyroine. Despite these expectations, the band always manage to bring something new to their shows and improve upon previous shows. The dichotomy created between the two stages enabled viewers to explore more greatly the space of the band and watch the performance from angles usually reserved for stage techs and event photographers. The new setting helped Hyroine create a closer connection between themselves and the audience. The intimacy of the venue meant that the attendees (made up of friends and family) were far more willing to listen to the music rather than talk over it. As far as performances go I think this tight-knit crowd coupled with the venue enabled Hyroine to give one of their best live performances to date.
I think the event also helped symbolize a new sort of Hyroine, a version where the live performance of the band more closely matched up with the vision and ideals of what the two piece strive to represent. This was certainly helped by Yelen and Roxy, along with their booking agent Tourmaline, being able to organize a show exactly to their liking instead of playing at someone else’s venue and for someone else’s organization.
This may have been Hyroine’s last live performance in Cape Town until they return from Berlin and leaves me amongst many others looking duly forward to the next time I see them live. The next best you can do is to listen to them on the internet until they return to South Africa again. The music is available on Spotify, Youtube, Soundcloud, Deezer, Klicktrack and Amazon.com
Plus they are releasing their first 7″ Vinyl soon!