Pond released new album Beard, Wives, Denim earlier this year and after widespread critical praise, the Australians bring their sunshine drenched power pop party together on their first UK tour.
Diminutive and not lacking in showmanship, front man Nick Allbrook wears his over-sized shirt almost like a straight jacket to begin with, the sense of impending fun is palpable. The stoner doom intro of ‘Zanman’ is heavy. Heads rock back and forth and then the freewheeling psych jam takes over.
Purple flashing lights shine as the band drip into the slow dreamy ‘When It Explodes’. Despite them claiming “everything that could have gone wrong, did” the crowd don’t seem to mind.
It’s a set with a healthy mix of new singles and older joints. ‘Betty Davis’ from 2010 album Frond starts with crowd assisted clapping transporting us to a mid 60s jamboree. Allbrook brushes off the previous audio mishaps and shouts one of many encouraging “come on mother f**kers!” before wielding a flute as Pond launch into ‘You Broke My Cool’.
The band’s movement on stage is free as they switch places and yell in unison into a single microphone, barely audible in amongst the cacophony of sound, all smiling in delight. The sheer noise of all these guitars and drums is noticeable.
‘Moth Wings’ opens with face melting reverb and feedback and the set closes with the brilliant ‘Eye Pattern Blindness’, a track ended in an explosion of confetti, flashing lights and cheers.
Yet still, the massed ranks want more. Sweaty and slightly embarrassed, the Aussie’s come back onto the stage and decree they only know one more song. They scorch the surrounding exposed brick work with belting cover of MC5’s ‘Kick Out The Jams’. Allbrook – well free of his earlier self imposed shackles - jumps from the stage and his dive takes him crowd surfing almost halfway across the room, microphone in hand and still beaming.
If there's ever a band who knows how to have fun, it's Pond.