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Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012

  by Dixie Ernill

published: 7 / 10 / 2012

Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012


Dixie Ernill enjoys Allo Darlin's joyous brand of indie pop in an impressive show at the Deaf Institute in Manchester

During a lost weekend in the Peak District I catch Allo Darlin' play in a museum with a large propeller as the back-drop to the stage. It is the first time the local promoters, Holy Smokes, have enjoyed a sell out and the first time Allo Darlin' have played in Derby. It's no coincidence. They reward the crowd with an energetic set before a jaw dropping encore of sentimental ballad 'Tallulah'. It is a wonderful night and one most bands can only dream about. Fast-forward six days and Manchester's best venue, The Deaf Institute, is playing host to the band and it is another sell out. From the opening couplet of 'The Polaroid Song' and 'Silver Dollars' from their self-titled debut LP, I can tell it is going to be another unforgetable show as everything fits perfectly into place. Elizabeth Morris' beautifully textured voice, that resembles the late great Kirsty MacColl if she'd been raised in the heat of Northern Queensland; the constant smile that lights up her face and her gentle ukulele strums are the obvious focal points, but the Marr-esque guitar work of Paul Rains; the bass of a bouncing Bill Botting and class drumming of Michael Collins enable the songs to explode into a joyous indie-pop that captivates the whole room. The newer tracks from the recently released second album, 'Europe', are equally as impressive with 'Capricornia', a homage to home; 'Northern Lights', a tale of Christmas in Sweden with a loved one and 'The Letter', a lyrical delight, maintaining the early momentum, before everyone is able to draw breath again during the tender slowy 'Some People Say'. The tempo is lifted back up during 'Let's Go Swimming', and reaches fever-pitch as the crowd go ape during the double whammy of 'If Loneliness Was Art' and 'Dreaming', the latter a rollicking duet between the Australian half of the group, Elizabeth and Bill. The buzz is staggering, but the set is barely half way and such is the strength of Allo Darlin's canon of songs that the quality rarely dips with 'Wonderland', 'Neil Armstrong' and the ace 'Europe' skipping merrily by, before a raucous 'Darren' and token cover version, 'Wu Tang Clan' (written by former Hefner man and subject of 'Darren' - Darren Hayman) bring proceedings to a close. An encore is implored by the crowd and Allo Darlin' don't disappoint as first Elizabeth weaves her way through 'Heartbeat Chilli', before she is joined by the rest of the band for two final opportunities to go crazy once more in the shape of 'My Heart is a Drummer' and riotous old single 'Henry Rollins'. Derby was always going to take some topping, but the band managed to do it here with an amazingly good performance. The photographs that accompany this article were taken by Marie Hazelwood.

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Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012

Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012

Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012

Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012

Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 7/9//2012

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Interview (2012)
Allo Darlin' - Interview
Dixie Ernill speaks to Elizabeth Morris, the Brisbane-born singer with much acclaimed London-based indie pop group Allo Darlin' about their just released second album, 'Europe'

live reviews

Deaf Institute, Manchester, 20/11/2014
Allo Darlin' - Deaf Institute, Manchester, 20/11/2014
Dixie Ernill finds the underrated Allo Darlin on exuberant form at a show at the Deaf Institute in Manchester
Deaf Institute, Manchester, 23/2/2012
Night and Day, Manchester, 29/1/2011

digital downloads


We Come From the Same Place (2014)
Exuberant and infectious third album from much acclaimed indie pop band, Allo Darlin'
Europe (2012)
Capricornia (2012)
My Heart is a Drummer (2010)

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