That explains it. Tall dude over the far side is a member of both Efterklang and Slaraffenland. They’re very similar sounding bands, with the latter leaning a bit more towards the structure and sensibilities of mainstream indie. This kind of style though is the very thing that upset many Efterklang fans upon hearing their latest album Magic Chairs. The album certainly took a couple of listens to win me over, but this is nothing unusual. Their progression towards more direct and concise songwriting has not gone down well in some quarters but, when transfered to a live setting, pushed the band’s show to new levels.
Given their close musical and personal relationship, it was no surprise to see a decent crowd enjoying Slaraffenland’s set. Though their sound reminded me of the headliners with a dollop of The National mixed in, the band looked and acted like a strange conglomeration of musicians from disparate backgrounds brought together for a bit of fun. It works though and despite the proliferation of somewhat over-zealous photographers their set was a big success and the reception from the crowd was equally impressive. A surge of fans towards the front before Efterklang along with the sudden population of the balcony turned a healthy crowd into a nearly-full house in a matter of minutes. The band emerged in more casual attire than on some previous visits. Tracks from the new album sounded robust while maintaining the intricacies that originally endeared them to so many fans. Old favourites like “Caravan” also got an outing and were as impressive as ever.
The moustachioed Danes are having a day off today and may follow the audiences recommendations of trips to Dalkey or Howth. Slaraffenland have travelled down to Cork though and are playing a free gig in Cyprus Avenue, so if you’re around there, do check them out. Photos continue below and hang out in a gang on Flickr. Best of the bunch are on the State review by Aoife Barry, which can be found here.