Heartstrings Review

CMJ Music Maration 2014: Bombay Bicycle Club at Terminal 5

By Andrew Kase



As the lights came on, shadows of the members of Bombay Bicycle Club appeared in the background. The show commenced as the music started on this rainy Wednesday night in New York City at one of the larger of CMJ’s list of venues — Terminal 5. As I listened to the crowd roar as band members rose up to the stage, it was obvious I was to become witness to an experience and event far greater than your average concert.

The assorted crowd instantly sang along to hits like “Shuffle,” “Lights Out, Words Gone,” and “Your Eyes.” With each song, the crowd was cheering more and more powerfully, as their fellow attendees jigged and danced along to the indie/alternative rock group’s eclectic tracks. This three-story venue housed the band’s massive screen backdrop, full of bewildering images of skeletons and album art, and released an exciting tangle of indie, folk, blues, and even a bit of electronic sounds throughout this radiant performance. Crowd-member and New York native, Roozbeh Ghanadi commented “My first impression was that they are an amazing band and they’re very lively!” The band played an extensive set list of songs, which included “How can You Swallow So Much Sleep,” “Feel,” and even several throwback songs. Lead singer, Jack Steadman, prefaced “Always Like This,” reminding us that they were going way back — a fitting introduction to a track from their 2009 album, I Had The Blues But I Shook Them Loose. Their varied set list pleased every kind of listener — from the long-time fan to the BBC newbie. “It’s been a good show. We both have listened to them before and I know some of their songs already, and heard a few new ones tonight,” said David Turner, another New York resident.

BBC approached the end of their night with a terrific digression, as member, Suren de Saram, sang a soulful, crowd-engaging cover of Robyn’s “With Every Heartbeat,” soon followed by a close to their much anticipated CMJ performance set. After a thunderous round of applause, which was certainly appropriate for the night, the group returned to the stage for an encore, and closed out their performance with their huge hit “Carry Me.” “I thoroughly enjoyed it,” said Haifa Barabri — Barabri was born and raised in London, and moved to New York. Barabri continued, “They really engaged the audience and I feel like I had a little dose of London in New York City.”

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