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Black Honey at Electric Ballroom Camden — 24/10/18

The Brighton-born, London-lived indie pop-rock band Black Honey have been around since 2014 stirring, waiting and teasing a debut album for years. Finally, after releasing their eponymous LP in September, the band end the UK leg of their European tour at Camden’s Electric Ballroom.

Frontwoman Izzy Phillips strides on like a glam rock icon in the making wearing a zebra-print long-sleeved top and blue patchwork flares with matching blazer. Glitter streamers and electric light-up Gatsby-esque eyes provide an albeit ominous backdrop. Everything about this is very Black Honey — an eclectic hotchpotch collage of styles and themes — they do what they like.

The band start humming and fuelling the crowd with “I Only Hurt The Ones I Love” before guitarist Chris Ostler drives home the song’s central riff. Chants of “cry for me baby, cry, cry baby” respond to the colourfully flood-lit stage. Just warming up. The soft choruses of “Madonna” and “All My Pride” come next before the slowly thumping along of “Bad Friends” and “Dig”.

The Electric Ballroom feels like a laid back venue tonight considering their energy and engagement with the crowd. Some join the front, sit at the nearby bar or go to the upper balcony level at their own leisure; nobody’s in a rush here.

Image by Harriet Brown and courtesy of Black Honey

Now everyone’s buzzing and jumping to their feet for “Somebody Better” and a large mosh pit is formed front and centre for the breakdown of “Spinning Wheel”. Phillips sounds like an indie-rock Lana Del Rey the more you listen to her — particularly on songs like “Baby” where the audience light up their phones. She takes to the crowd on the penultimate song: 2015 single “Corrine”.

In total, Black Honey have played eleven of the twelve tracks on their album and thrown in a few singles and EP releases and you can’t be disappointed by that one bit. They finish the show very appropriately with “Midnight”. An eclectic mix of indie pop-rock, glam-rock throwback and heavy guitar riffs paint a colourful performance at Black Honey’s major Electric Ballroom show in Camden.

Image by Harriet Brown and courtesy of Black Honey