London Kentish Town Forum

Fungus are meant for [I]Smash Hits[/I] covers and kids who are too cool for Billie...

It's the PG-rated version of rock. Backward baseball caps; trousers baggy enough to accommodate the whole band and a fresh-faced, bright-eyed excitement bubbling at the surface. Those waiting for headliners Symposium listen for about three seconds and then, naturally, pogo their very young heads off.

Not least because Sweden's Fungus work to a reliably familiar formula - loud, catchy and enthusiastic. Recent single 'I'd Rather Be A Doll' splutters out choruses like a hi-NRG Nirvana, straining with feedback and springy Elastica bass but never denting the pop sheen. Similarly, 'A Fanclub Would Be Nice' has the messy melodic force of early Ash while 'Oh My God' gets under your skin with the same irritating ease as Silver Sun, itching like Green Day once it's there.

But lead singer Johann Lundgren couldn't care less about pillaging his record collection. He grins, jumps up and down and secretly can't believe he's not down there crowdsurfing. It's all an enormous, defiant reply to those who say the kids have given up on music to play computer games.

So who cares if one song merges into the next, with little gritty substance to sink your teeth into? Fungus are meant for Smash Hits covers and kids who are too cool for Billie, and tonight was their first victory.

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