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Dandi Wind
Dandi WindThe Do Club @ the Core Club, Brighton
Friday November 3 2006

I'm in a hole in the ground, and everything's painted beige. Or, to be a little more informative, I'm in the Do Club, Brighton's twice-monthly gathering of art rockers and new wavers, which takes place mere yards from the sea in a murky basement bar that has certainly seen better days. You know you're not exactly at the top end of the club scene when the dance floor lighting amounts to Christmas tree lights taped to the ceiling, and where the air conditioning system is otherwise known as 'leavng the door open'. But these insalubrious surroundings are entirely appropriate for the kind of mashed-up, bashed-up music mix which blares out of the disco speakers - Devo, The Birthday Party, These New Puritans, Public Enemy. Meanwhile, the club's clientele of geek-punk blokes and Kate Mossified indie chicks certainly know how to slum it in style.

There's nothing so elaborate as a stage in this venue. Dandi Wind stake out their territory in a corner of the dance floor, over by the entrance to the gents. If the band are a little taken aback by their surroundings, they don't show it. The set-up is simple: drums, keyboards, vocals. Two impassive chaps in thrift shop glam rags get behind the instruments. And a small green explosion detonates on vocals. This is Dandi herself: an aerobics instructor on fast forward, a barely tamed hurricane, a forest of frenziedly whirling windmills somehow encased in a human body and a psychedelic green leotard. She hurls herself around as if pursued by several devils, leaping about in front of the Dandi Windclustered new wavers in a manner entirely unencumbered by self-consciousness or, indeed, the force of gravity. All the while she yelps out a machine-gun staccato vocal as the drums frantically rattle and the keyboards honk and wail. Dandi wind aren't so much a band as an assemblage of sound effects, but somehow the sheer onslaught of rhythm and energy coalesces into something akin to music. It's fast and manic and glorious - and also strangely unsettling. This kind of mad rush of a set, without even the dividing line of a stage edge to separate band from performers, has a certain flavour of danger that you just don't get at more conventional gigs. While Dandi is never less than cheery and affable, grinning as manically as her quick-fire delivery allows, there's a certain sense of anything-can-happen-ness about the band that shoves them way beyond the usual indie chancer zone.

The set is enlivened by a steady stream of nervous blokes scampering through the performance area on their way to the bog - at one point Dandi follows a couple of lads in, the door swinging closed on her mic lead. I don't know what went on behind that closed door, but the lads looked a little shellshocked when they emerged. There's never a CCTV camera around when you want one, is there? A mere rumble and tumble after that, it's last song time. It is, of course, the nearest thing Dandi Wind have to a hit single, the surreal thunder of 'Balloon Factory', a song which even ticks the catchy chorus box. Although, in Dandi Wind's world, a catchy chorus goes something like 'Wang diddly dang dang, diddle biddle wang wong ping pong'. Ah, they don't write 'em like that any more. In fact, I don't think they ever did...until Dandi Wind came along.

Essential links:

Dandi Wind: Website | MySpace

For more photos from this gig, find Dandi Wind by name here.

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  Page credits: Review, photos and construction by Michael Johnson.
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