When you put the words Chaplin’s and Shindig together you’re pretty much guaranteed a crowd. The venue itself has more than established itself as a fine purveyor of frothy fermented beverages and frantic frolicking fun. When they use the word shindig you can be fairly sure they mean it in the hootennaniest sense. Before we get on to the incredible calibre of the music on offer can we take just a quick second to raise a glass to the wicked staff and incredibly stocked backbar, but especially to the boot shaking, magic moon elixir that is Charlie Wells Triple Hopped IPA, seriously it’s liquid wonderment, give it a swig. Editor’s Note: Yack Magazine is in no way sponsored by the Wells brewery… if however anyone from Wells happens to be reading this, we are totally open to it.
First onto the stage were the ridiculously young and even more staggeringly talented Hello Hawaii. They look effortless and natural and while still a little baby faced they are clearly seasoned veterans when it comes to the stage. The set starts simply and slowly, bread and butter songwriting with a tight but ultimately un-arresting sound in the vein of Bombay Bicycle Club. The boys prove to be so much more than that though, over the course of their time on stage the power and energy grows and just as they feed off the crowd the crowd feed from them. With every track the amps crackle ever louder and by the time it comes for their final song the Chaplin’s crowd is begging for more, a cry the band are all too happy to oblige and deliver a raucous and rowdy finale to a set that grabbed us by the ear and dragged us to the front of the stage. Writing and performing all their own material this is a band with passion, pride and potential and we’ll be keeping a close eye on the lads.
Wikkaman are a band that enjoy a good boogie, never more evident than in the second half of Hello Hawaii’s set where you could see various members of Wikkaman at the front of the crowd leading Chaplin’s in the merry ol’ knees up. When they take to the stage themselves however it’s a different story entirely. Easily capable of wrapping their tender fingers around your heartstrings and playing you as deftly as they do their instruments with ballads like ‘Chesil Beach‘, they are equally adept in summoning something electrifyingly energetic that creeps up from the floorboards and sends you jittering across the dancefloor a la ‘Painted Man‘. Existing somewhere in the liminal space between theatre and music Wikkaman are truly mesmerising, whether being hypnotised by the spectacle, entranced by the interwoven three voice harmonies or stunned silly by the rhythm section, you attention is always captured and always being utterly satisfied. This is a fantastic local live band that you should definitely be checking out as soon as possible, however it must be said that whilst they blew the roof off Chaplin’s on Saturday night we suspect they’d really soar in a field on a sunny Dorset day so check their festival dates if you really want the full barn dance experience.
Words by Matt Miles.
Check out more from Hello Hawaii here.
Check out Wikkaman here.
Check out what the Chaplin’s crew are up to next here.
Find out what other delicious hoppy treats the Wells brewery offer here.