Isolated Atoms @ St. Paul’s Gallery, 24th February 2011


We’re pampered, invitation only, guests at St. Paul’s Gallery. Hosting a hallowed collection of iconic limited edition portrait album covers and associated Rock/film ephemera it seems a fitting venue from which to launch West Midlands based Isolated Atoms’ debut single, ‘Play’.

This really is a scorching song full of magnificent dynamic and riff driven power rock confidence. If you like your Cult and Joy Division, partial to a dabble of Editors and Interpol then you need to download this little gem right now but, be warned – it’s infectious. And if you savour wisps of Simple Minds well, isn’t that spooky because Derek Forbes has flown down today to guest on bass.


About the band. Singer, hirsute Grant Ashman, sporting a cutting edge Fozzie bear fur coat, haute couture L’Oxfam, clenches the mic-stand with Jim Morrison intensity, and I know that because I saw him do it. But it’s those slightly mascaraed, pleading eyes that peep between clenched fingers that suggests he knows what the little girls know that the other men don’t understand. On sun-bursting Gibson guitar is the Adonis sculptured, an appropriately named, Mark Neat. DNA steeped in rock postured ease he’s possibly the one the ladies might take a shine to. And very likely some boys. It’s all about inclusion and plurality these days.


On keyboards, David Davies, is an altogether darker matter. Beanpole lean in de rigueur noir attire with alabaster pale skin, and possibly the off-spring of Black Swan’s dangerous liaisons’ eye-liner, he smiles knowingly with the disconcerting invitation to visit his cellar and meet ‘the other ones…’ great musician mind. The exotically named, Jake Osei-Tutu, on drums is just there having a whale of a time. They scythed through a blistering set of twelve numbers (and again thirty minutes later) drawing on an eclectic fusion of diverse influences that they’ve crucible cooked to near, but not quite yet, perfection. Time for some serious Transit torturing touring. That’s how you find out who your mates are.

Setlist: The Way It Is, Here We Go, It Was You, Pray For Me Now, Gun In Your Hand, Slide Guitar( might be a memo, not a title!), I Keep (Cult song), Play, I’ve Tried, Fall Down, Tell Me What I Want, Take Me Away From The World.

Review – John Kennedy
Photos – Ian Dunn

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