Review: Camera at St Giles’ Sessions
In celebration of Wrexham’s Year of Culture a series of performances have been held at St Giles Church. Organised by The Foundry, they have highlighted some of the best musical talent in Wrexham. The final session, simply named ‘Winter’ features Camera, one of Wrexham’s most successful bands.
Playing to a capacity crowd, it is clear from the start that the lads from Camera are relishing the prospect of playing in such grand surroundings. Flanked by all the trappings of such an environment they seem dwarfed by the altar and the cross. It is soon apparent though that these are seasoned professionals now and after opener Take Me Back and old classic Abersoch, Camera soon settle into their groove.
The music that Camera play is difficult to pigeonhole with influences ranging from sources that span the whole spectrum of music. One thing that is prominent are the heartfelt vocals of singer Matt Nicholls. The first few songs find him somewhat singled out by the surroundings which only adds to the atmosphere that tonight something special may happen. That “something special” happens on the song 6/8 when a groove kicks in which is so deep and throbbing that it is both expansive and intimate at the same time.
Rapturous applause greets this song as the band take it further into the heights of the church. Vocals wail, Ben’s bass rumbles and Steve’s guitar hits new heights of alchemic magic. Five songs in and they have the performance in their pocket. From here-on in the first part of the session is a mix of old and new which peaks once again with a tremendous All The Time and final song Midnight Sun.
The second part of the session is a chance for Camera to show their lighter side. Augmented by Rachel and Gemma on backing vocals they manage to make the sun come out from the clouds (in a manner of speaking) as they play Delilah and Let the Wind Blow. This idea of the sun coming out is soon put to bed though by a return to their more darker side with possible highlight Wait For Me.
Once again the crowd are treated to a masterclass in rage and despair as the music sends us down a swirling vortex of darkness.
Crystal Ball seems rather unsubstantial after this but does provide to lighten the mood in time for an extraordinary Happiness which brings to mind Tom Waits at his most drunken. Featuring an accordion, it does seem at odds with the rest of the set but it does show a side of Camera which reveals a sort of playfulness. After this, all that is left is a cover of The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore and set closer Tell Me What It Is. An excellent night of music in wonderful surroundings which will go down in legend as one of the highlights of The Year Of Culture 2011.
Andrew is an editor and writer for wrexhammusic.co.uk and promotes the wrexhammusic.co.uk nights.