SUPERORGANISM: Shepherd's Bush Empire
Updated: Jan 29, 2019
I was going against my cheap ethos when I decided to purchase tickets to see indie pop 8-piece, SUPERORGANISM last night. But I suppose months ago when I did, I was rolling in that student loan and assumed Future Amy would thank me for it (she did).
I don’t know if any of you have heard of SUPERORGANISM and they’re not exactly brand new, but I’m gonna say that in short, their music sounds like how it feels to eat those sour patch kids sweets. If you want to immediately know what I mean, then listen here.
Shockingly, I nearly didn’t make it to the gig. After sprinting off the tube to throw up some terrible pre-event food and taking part in a solo intervention with the mirror, I was running pretty damn late, but I knew there was no way in hell I wasn’t going. I made it to Shepherd’s Bush Empire in one piece; stone cold sober. Not how I’d usually go about these things, but probably for the best.
Standing at the bar while my friends ordered the drinks I so wish I could have, I was completely taken aback by the support band that were currently half-way through their set. On stage were four small Japanese girls all dressed in matching pink outfits and singing Dancing Queen a cappella in Japanese. Was I in the right place? I wasn’t sure, but as they began playing their own music, I realised I was thoroughly enjoying it. They’re a cute, young, all-girl band called CHAI, and if you want to hear the reason I was so captivated, then you can listen here (brace your ears, it’s very unusual).
There was 20 minutes until SUPERORGANISM were on, so I decided to grab some merch. While I was waiting at the stand, I look to my right and see CHAI chatting to each other. Look, I have no idea why I did not ask for a picture with them, I was obviously not in my right mind. So I guess there is now no evidence that I even spoke to them or that they also replied. Just trust me when I say we’re all best friends now.
To watch the show, I’d secured a spot on a small set of stairs quite far back next to the sound team; a position that allowed me to view the entire stage so I wouldn’t miss a thing. I didn’t really know what to expect. I hoped there would be some cool lights and maybe visuals, but because they’re a relatively new act, I didn’t assume it would be as incredibly awesome as it actually was.
From the first second that SUPERORGANISM came on stage to the last, I was blown away. You truly do not know who you are until you have seen SUPERORGANISM live. During that short hour, I felt that I was part of something so much bigger than just myself. I honestly cannot believe that this insane performance is the brain child of just 8 talented individuals from all around the globe. The music was amazing, performed exactly how I had been listening to it on Spotify, except now it was pulsating through by entire being. The visuals were so well done, kind of weird and very open to interpretation, but sporting bright colours and swirling patterns with random things like whales and prawns bouncing on and off the screen. I mean, they have an entire song dedicated to prawns…so I guess that last one makes a lot of sense.
Half-way through, the other band members walked off the stage, leaving behind the small Japanese girl with an unusually strong American accent to ‘have a chat’ (as she put it) with everyone in the audience. This chat resulted in her calling several people ‘hot’ and passing the mic to an audience member called Nick who yelled, "fuck my ex-girlfriend", and received a boo from the rest of the crowd. I’m guessing we were booing his ex? Nick seemed like a nice guy. Once she had been talking to us for about 10 minutes, hyping us up for the next half: “why the fuck aren’t you moshing to the sound of my sweet voice?!”, the rest of SUPERORGANISM came back and started playing again.
You’d think that this gig couldn’t get more interesting, with the great music, cool visuals, nice little comedic interlude, oh and I forgot to mention, sequin hooded capes; but it definitely did. For the ‘last song’ (a lie) the lead singer chose about 60 crowd members to join her on stage to create a “mosh pit up here”. It was great, suddenly 8 people became nearly 70 and I was only a little gutted that I couldn’t go up there also. I’m sure I’ll get another chance.
Then there was that whole, ‘the band walk off the stage, the tech crew come on and pretend to start packing down’, when we all know it’s just a façade because they haven’t even performed their most popular song yet. I’m sure they were waiting for the audience to start really screaming again, because once we did they were back on and this time accompanied by massive blow-up objects; a watermelon, a pizza slice, two whales (I think there’s a theme here) and some white balloons.
SUPERORGANSIM certainly ended their set with a bang, with the lead singer crowd surfing on the pizza slice like a strange boat on a sea of arms and heads. I absolutely loved it and was so glad I went. I am being true to my thoughts when I say that that was the best gig I’ve ever been to. Every second was incredible, and even though they only have about 10 tracks, their performance was saturated with excitement and fun.
I dare you not to give them a chance and go see them if you can. Everyone should get to experience the crazy new pop show by SUPERORGANISM.