The Bravery : Blank Canvas, Monday May 23

The Bravery : Blank Canvas, Monday May 23

Watch out Brandon: your favourite sparring partners know how to put on one hell of a rock’n’roll show

The Bravery are 25th-century rock’n’roll. They are android punk robo-men from the planet Tequila Sex. They’re Skabba The Hot. As they take the stage to a cheer like an exploding Death Star, if your retinas can survive the white hot tungsten glare of superstardom, take a look at them. Michael Zakarin, a lizard-eyed guitar velociraptor eternally trapped in the Dance Of The Funky Python. Dirt, the topless, beer-spraying Dr Who villain with the eye make-up of a bisexual Apache and the cheekbones of the gods. And Sam Endicott, the genetically engineered, cloned-by-aliens-from-the-nad-juice-of-James-Dean Perfect Pop Star™, gobbing across the stage in jeans so tight they’re garrotting his colon. Swoon at their lonely puppy stares! Gasp at their synchronised knee-bends! Tremble as they teeter atop monitors! They may share a synth-funk heartbeat and an unquenchable lust for Nick Rhodes with The Killers, but Brandon’s lot look like remote controlled mannequins next to this future rock riot – half West Side Story, half Robocop. The Bravery are rock’n’roll, and if they dropped out of a major label styling machine alongside a bundle of freshly-shorn blond dreadlocks, so what? You think the Sex Pistols just turned up looking like that?

Besides, it’s not as if they’ve sold out their roots. Electro-fy ska music, add ‘Blue Monday’, a bucket of amphetamines, decent hair and the bassline from Blur’s ‘Girls And Boys’ and you’ve got ‘Public Service Announcement’. Mix in some Kraftwerk squelchings and a touch of schizophrenia and you have ‘Tyrant’. Then, ‘An Honest Mistake’! ‘Unconditional’! And they’re hardly the Ghost-Faced Killers either – ‘The Ring Song’ is more Hot Hot Heat while ‘How To Fly’ is a crack-mangled Duran Duran mugging ‘Spirit In The Sky’ for spare change. No copycat ‘Brightside’s these; this is an electro evolution.

You still won’t trust them though. They look too good, sound too now, rock too beautifully. You want your pop stars to look like Puggo from The Music, dress like the drummer from Coldplay and sound like The Australian Razorlight forever, don’t you? Don’t you?

Mark Beaumont