By Sophie Parkes
It’s a lazy bank holiday Monday and it seems like Manchester’s music fans are recovering from the excesses of the weekend, as there is only a small crowd to witness Her Name Is Calla promote their second album, The Quiet Lamb.
Her Name Is Calla are obviously disappointed at this – there’s a few wry smiles and awkward comments which violinist Sophie winces at – but they needn’t worry as every audience member rushes to the merch counter as soon as the last note dies.
But enough of last notes.Her Name Is Calla begin with a march to the gallows, the violin simultaneously grounding the ensemble and dramatics like the criminal dragging his heels.
Her Name Is Calla deal in ambience and atmosphere rather than shimmery pop, and sinister and impending is their bag.
The only respite is a track which could be a Bond theme, but even then,one gets the feeling that a threat is looming around the corner. Sadly, it’s soon apparent that tonight is not their night and the band find themselves plagued with rogue crackles, unidentifiable fuzzes and whirrs, though in the second track, it is only the synth player’s expression that implies these aren’t intentional.
The silences and notes left to hang are as important as the melodies and the thunder that crackles over the PA could well be an aural embellishment.
Though Her Name Is Calla would not record this as their most memorable gig, it was a classic case of a small but very appreciative audience who ventured down the band’s darkened forest path and enjoyed absorbing their eerie vibes.