The ladies of Lewes donned their best 1980’s Madonna garb and dragged their hubbies out for a nostalgic night of retro-synth music.
On the bill at the ever popular Con Club were Synthony 101 and Digitalis. The bands were thinking of the punters as they kindly put on the event for free. Synthony 101 are a 1980’s electronic tribute act who hail from West Sussex and Digitalis are a synth duo in the mould of the Pet Shop Boys, who perform their own material and no covers. So this evening I guess there was choice of which camp you would like to sit in – covers or original material.
Tonight in Lewes the Synthony 101 four-piece made up of Hayley, Antony, Sean and Dave, performed two sets. They have a Butlins/Cruise Ships vibe to them, which certain people present enjoyed. They played their versions of The Human League (Being Boiled), Gary Numan (Cars), Blondie (Call Me), OMD (Messages), Kim Wilde (Kids In America), Yazoo (Nobody’s Diary), Depeche Mode (Everything Counts), Propaganda (Duel), Eurythmics (Here Comes The Rain Again), Blancmange (Living On A Ceiling) and Visage (Mind Of A Toy) to name but a few.
We ourselves had actually come along to witness a rare Digitalis appearance of original new material. We have previously seen Digitalis play live at the Concorde 2 in Brighton supporting Blancmange and again at the Con Club. Tonight they performed seven brand spanking new rave-pop compositions from the duos forthcoming ‘Hold On To Me’ EP, which will be featuring the following songs: 1) Hold On To Me. 2) Could It Be That All Is Chaos. 3) Hold On To Me (12″ Mix). 4) Could It Be That All Is Chaos (Instrumental). 5) Hold On To Me (Club Mix).
Singer and local resident Graham Digitalis seems to have music running in the family veins, as I recently saw his brother Mark play in another band in Brighton, however Mark is best known as a member of the infamous rockabilly band The Long Tall Texans.
Digitalis on the other hand offer up a completely different sound to ‘The Texans’. I would best describe it having elements of trance, rave and synthpop rolled up into one distinctive sound. Tonight the band sounded as though they are performing songs from back in the day just like Synthony 101 did, however tonight’s Digitalis songs are new compositions as opposed to their older material which we had witnessed at our previous Digitalis gigs (such as ‘No Control’, ‘Nothing Lasts Forever’, ‘Feed Your Head’ and ‘Why Accept’). But I guess that’s the point that the band are trying to get over – new retro sounding compositions.
So, the Digitalis setlist of new songs performed tonight were as follows:
1) Wasting My Life Away.
2) Could It Be That All Is Chaos.
3) Is That What You Came For.
4) I’m Not Your Slave.
5) Permanent Smile.
7) Hold On To Me.