Live – Dry Cleaning + Social Haul at The Prince Albert Brighton

Dry Cleaning / Social Haul, The Prince Albert Brighton, 8th August 2019

Having heard little of their music but many recommendations I finally had the opportunity to see Dry Cleaning on the Brighton leg of their tour. With so much hype surrounding a band it’s easy for expectations to fall short – that certainly wasn’t the case here.

I also have to confess to having been fairly ignorant about the support band, Social Haul. So as they took to the stage it was a welcome surprise to see that one third of the band was Leigh Padley,  also one third of the mighty Traams, whose Wikipedia entry ‘a British indie rock band which formed in Chichester’ I’ve always considered to be a line unlikely to be repeated. Social Haul’s 11 song set was packed with energy and short, piercing segments of post punk. The Albert was deservedly already busy and it was more than worth getting there early. I hope to see more of Social Haul and redress my ignorance.

And so to Dry Cleaning and a collection of articulate spoken word tracks with occasional inflections of caustic sarcasm, this is absorbing storytelling rather than pithy poetry. The juxtaposition of the softly spoken lyrics against a background of bouncy riffs is close to hypnotic and the by now packed crowd were suitably impressed. The band seemed genuinely surprised by the scale of the positive reaction but it really was more than warranted; they’ve managed to achieve something that stands out and it’s hard to think that they’ll be playing venues of this size for much longer. Look out for their new EP Sweet Princess due for release next week; currently available to pre-order on limited edition cassette on Bandcamp.

Dry Cleaning are touring across the UK throughout August, be kind to yourself and go along to see them.

For live dates and more information you can find Dry Cleaning here and the elusive Social Haul here

Words and photos by Siobhan

9th August 2019