Let’s take a guy who plays guitar like Prince, sings like Axl, wears kinky boots & fish-nets like vintage Bowie, and sways like a throwback from art school circa 1974, what have you got?
His headline show on 10th March at the wonderful Half Moon in Putney mixed surrealism with pop theater to deliver a show that was grand in effulgence.
“A Rock ’n’ Roll Story” (his first single) was a Bowie-style ejulation that encapsulated all the emotional turmoil one might find in a romantic melodrama; this transitioned into a brand new unpublished song, “The Quiet Ones” which started as a contemplative dream and ended as an audiovisual paroxysm.
“Time Is An Illusion Baby” was frizzy and showcased the undoubted talents of Beau’s circumstellar bandmates including a new rhythm section (this was the first time they played together in concert) and a seductive interaction between Beau and his suitably sombreroed associate-guitarist, Mike Wroe.
On “Universe in Reverse” the vivacious multi-instrumentalist / singer created a glamorous, progressive rock fusion, to tackle the psychedelic experience of finding oneself floating beyond physical limits. While “Bisolar Disorder” brought a flurry of Prince Rogers Nelson style guitar-pyrotechnics with a bacchanalian sense of frenzied escapism.
We would have liked to have seen the wonderboy use more keyboards — if you have the apparatus on stage, you might as well use them — and some of the transitions between songs felt awkward, but for the most part, this was a multisensory, multi-layered and hallucinatory show.
Beau Bowen’s work is brimming with wordsworthian decadence, genius romanticism, and neurotic psycho-sexuality … so if you want to recapture the art-rock end of the glam scene you might have found in mid-1970s London (think of the majestic outburst found in Queen II for example) — this is for you.
His new album “The Great Anticlimax” is due out on 10th April and was produced by Miles James (Tom Odell) mixed by 5-times Grammy Award-winner Jimmy Douglass ( Roxy Music) and mastered by Grammy-winner Mike Bozzi (Kendrick Lamar)
Next show: Notting Hill Arts Club, 3rd April
Words & pictures: @neilmach 2020 ©