Fresh from having played at SXSW in Austin, Texas Australian band Gossling played an outstanding set at The Waiting Room. Now this venue (which is located beneath a pub) is super super small. There were two long benches at each side of the room which made it nice to have a good view at the front and to sit down. What I like about small places like this is you can just arrive when the doors are about to open and still be one of the first inside. Back to Gossling the moment I saw that they were coming back to London I booked my ticket straight away and £4 seemed quite a bargain. Currently signed to Polydor this band impressed me greatly back at The Lexington last year which was the 2nd time they had performed in the UK (the first being for Communion at Notting Hill Arts Club the day before).
Fast forward to 9.30 and Gossling took to the small stage. The person at the forefront of this incredible band is Helen Croome who hails from Melbourne, Australia. What was showcased was 10 extraordinary songs. 6 which feature on the upcoming debut LP Harvest Of Gold and the other 4 from the current EP International Living. Other than Helen you had Peter Marin (drums) and Ryan Meeking (guitar). What kicked started the set was Big Love which they went straight into. Back at The Lexington it was this song which struck me immediately and it is one incredible tune. This was dreamy folk pop and Croome’s vocals were ever so sweet. For most of the songs Helen was on the keyboard. This number immediately hooks you in and there is a thumping chorus. Big Love showed off Croome’s incredible songwriting skills. “We’re Gossling and we’re all the way from Australia. Before we came here we were at SXSW in Austin, Texas. It was really easy there to pull the Australian card. You guys are a bit harder to impress. This next song is called Harvest Of Gold and it’s the title track of an album we have coming out here a little later in the year. This song is about comparing a field of wheat to a relationship. So the idea that you can sow the grains in the field and that’s like the beginning of the relationship” Helen then sweetly said to the audience. Now this was Harvest Of Gold which is also the name of the upcoming album. I found this very upbeat and yet again it completely hooks you in. It was superbly delivered and is one of my favourite songs off of the LP. Straight after it was then onto Never Expire which I was hearing live for the first time. Now this was extremely different compared to the opening two tunes of the set. Whilst it was entrancing it was also slightly more heavier as there was the clashing of the drums. Although it was stunningly delivered Never Expire is not a happy song as it tells you about a couple that are breaking up “Talking of faults, shifting blame from yourself/ Caught in a mess of words when you try lying as help”. Next it was onto another not so happy song. “So this next song we’re going to play is on the album that’s coming out. It’s called Songs Of Summer. I wrote this song about a relationship were you’ve been with someone for a very long time and kind of lost that sparkle and that initial thing that was there at the beginning and it’s just become a bit random and boring. And yeah, then you break up” Helen then which resulted in some laughter as the break up theme recurred throughout the set. Songs Of Summer was flawless and also Ryan sang the male vocal. Actually I could picture Ed Harcourt singing the male vocal. Songs Of Summer left me completely mesmerised despite the fact it is telling you about a breakdown of a relationship. “This one is about listening in on a lovers spat and kind of like pretend that you’re listening in to the hotel room next to you. And you’re listening to these lovers breaking up” Croome then mentioned before diving into the final song that appears on Harvest Of Gold and this being A Lovers’ Spat. Now I found this to be rather mellowing and hypnotic as well. Following on was a trio of songs taken from the International Living EP. “Just because it’s lovely and quiet we’re going to play another lovely and quiet one. Not really it was in the set. This one is about a friendship where one person in the friendship likes the other person more than they should. And it’s really awkward. And they break up” Helen then mentioned before going straight into the heartbreaking ballad Love Fall Foul. Now this was both gentle and sensitive. “We’re going to pick up the pace a bit now and get a bit sassy. This track is from one of my earlier EP’s. This is about a certain kind of person. I think I’ve met a few you may of known some. Yeah bit of a hussy” Croome then said before Heart Killer. This was pure indie pop and there was something really distinctive about Helen’s vocals. I found this tune to be simply epic. “This one is another upbeat number. You may feel like tapping your toes or nodding your heads. Which is fine. My public liability insurance just covers that. Don’t get too crazy out there” Helen wittingly said to the intimate audience. It was then onto the spectacular Rose which was one hell of a song. Lyrics were ever so stunning and this is one that easily gets you moving as it was rather upbeat. “I wrote this one about my beginnings in my introduction to social media as an artist and the idea that anyone can write anything about you that they want. So this is about me learning about that and getting over it and learning not to be such a pussy about it” Croome then mentioned before the penultimate tune of the evening and this being Challenge. This whimsical number is by far my favourite off the upcoming LP. Challenge which Helen sang whilst playing acoustic guitar was infectious and the vocal delivery was extremely sweet. It was then Wild Love which rounded off an extraordinary set. This features on the International Living EP an it was a right corker. Like Challenge this was delivered on the guitar. Wild Love was uplifting and the chorus was light and super catchy.
Harvest Of Gold
Songs Of Summer
A Lovers’ Spat
Love Fall Foul
OVERALL: Despite the majority of the tunes revolving round the same theme of breaking up you cant help but feel happy inside. Maybe that is the fact the vocals were extremely sweet or it could be that fact Helen Croome is utterly adorable and very witty as well. Each song that was performed was rather dreamy and a part of Big Love reminded me of a song by Coldplay.
If you like dreamy folk pop music then give Gossling a listen to. This was their 3rd gig in the UK and they have something which makes you want to see them again and again. The 10 song set featured 6 from the new LP and 4 from International Living. Like I mentioned Challenge has to be my favourite new one whilst from the International Living EP it had to be Love Fall Foul.
I relish the prospect seeing them live again.