THE SOUP Kitchen in the Northern Quarter, Manchester, was awakened by the indie melodies of Reading four-piece, Sundara Karma on Saturday, October 24. I was there too, here is what she thought…
Descending down the stairs into the basement of the Soup Kitchen, audience members were met with a stage with a backdrop covered in glitter and the projected reflections of a disco ball- a perfect venue for the band to play with bags of character. First up supporting Sundara Karma were Pale Waves – Manchester based four-piece consisting of Heather, Ciara, Ryan and Hugo. This set up of two boys and two girls really separates the band from other upcoming indie bands in a positive way. There’s not really any other way to describe this band, other than really dreamy indie-pop. Their stage presence is impeccable and their style and sound is refined so well to a point that this band should have no trouble in making their way up the ladder of musicians.
Shortly following Pale Waves were Leeds based four-piece, Vitamin. After playing on the introducing stage at Leeds festival 2015 on the early bird Thursday and gathering a rather large following, it’s clear the four piece are another band to watch. With a distinctly memorable vocal section and catchy riffs and choruses, it’s impossible not to dance along to the funky tracks from Vitamin.
As the small underground venue started to fill up, Sundara Karma took to the stage with front man, Oscar, matching with the glitter backdrop in his turtleneck.
Their single ‘Flame’ really grasped the audience’s attention, with the memorable chorus, which had the audience almost chanting at the top of their voices. Having seen the band three times before, I had never seen the band perform a headline show. However, the difference between the receptions at the headline show compared to the support slots was incredible. It’s great to see the audience members engaging with the band and appreciating their musical talents.
Progressing throughout their set, Sundara Karma filled every song with as much passion and energy as the last, with front man Oscar telling the crowd, ‘now it’s time to party!’ Enticing the audience in with their shimmering guitar riffs and hooks, the set did nothing but draw in the audience even further into the world of Sundara Karma.
Even almost two years after releasing their first EP, the band still touched on their roots of Sundara Karma, covering ‘Indigo Puff’, a song off EP one. The band radiate ‘coolness’, with them telling me earlier in their interview, ‘we’re kinda hippies really, our name means beautiful karma’. Beautiful could be another way to describe their stage presence and communication with the crowd. The band appeared at ease on stage and engaged almost every other song with fans of the band.
After performing ‘Diamond Cutter’, there were only a few songs left on their set. First of the three songs was’Vivienne’. This is definitely one of the band’s best songs and is a perfect representation of the band’s style – a beautifully crafted indie anthem from start to finish. As the end of the set neared, the band then played ‘waves,’ a track which began with haunting vibes and provided and excellent build up, which then fired up their last song, ‘loveblood’.
This song was a perfect song to end Sundara Karma’s set. Filled with passion, the spirited track raised the heartbeat of every crowd member, resulting in them dancing along to the adrenaline-fuelled track, leaving the audience both extremely warm but at the same time their indie hearts fulfilled.