Thankfully, the Gods of Live Music looked down more kindly on headliners Wye Oak. The last time I reviewed the Baltimore duo for The Line of Best Fit, back in 2011, I commented that their moniker may engender misleading presumptions about the music they play (I personally anticipated a bunch of real-ale drinkers prancing about with lutes). They are in fact a much more interesting - and considerably less irritating - proposition, especially given their recent shift towards more synth-driven songwriting on latest album Shriek.

For one thing, for a band consisting of only two members, they sure make one hell of a racket. Andy Stack is a rhythmic powerhouse on drums and keyboards, fluidly shifting between the two mid-song, mid-verse, mid-bar, whilst Jenn Wasner’s husky vocals, rumbling bass riffs and new-found 80’s synth lines (at one point I was convinced they were going to break into Toto’s “Africa”) lend their indie rock balladry both power and subtlety. There’s no visuals, no gimmicks, no pretention here- just good, old fashioned solid songwriting, light on cliches and heavy on atmosphere. Some might bemoan the more electronic direction the band have gone in recent years - indeed, they even employ a backing track from time to time, albeit in subtle fashion- but their more earthy, folk-influenced work hasn’t been completely jettisoned. Indeed, the best-received songs of the night were those that comprised the encore - a moody and effective cover of Kate Bush classic “Running Up That Hill”, the Big Hit “Civilian” and a solo acoustic rendition of “Doubt” - none of which featured any electronics at all. Perhaps, especially given the technical hitches earlier in the evening, there’s sometimes truth in the old dictum “less is more”?