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Ocean Grove and Casey at Black Heart, London - live review

Aussie Oddworlders get Camden beaming

Art for Ocean Grove and Casey live at Black Heart, London

It’s still light outside Camden’s Black Heart, but South Wales’ CASEY [7] are doing their best to evoke the wee small hours with their atmospheric take on hardcore. Despite their relatively early set, there’s an impressive crowd on hand to witness their heartfelt, melodic interpretation of the genre. Possessed of an accomplished sense of dynamics perfectly suited to claustrophobic environs such as this, they quickly win over the room. OCEAN GROVE [9], however, are on another level. A mixed bag on record, the ‘Oddworld’ crew make infinitely more sense live. They’re clearly having the time of their lives and that’s reflected back by the crowd, who go berserk from the first note. It’s just so much fun. Drummer Sam is a surprisingly nuanced powerhouse, while bassist Dale manages to combine a bright yellow shirt, Liam Gallagher-style sunglasses and a series of wacky smiles without looking anything less than cool as fuck. Meanwhile, frontman Luke conducts the pandemonium, controlling the crowd with hand gestures as if at the head of an anarchic orchestra. The whole thing sounds and feels like it’s taking place in a venue at least 10 times the size; this is a main stage festival set that’s somehow being contained within a small room above a bar in Camden. Tonight, OG are an outrageous example of just how enjoyable live music can – and should – be.