LUCKY DELUCCI - Cardiff Barfly

A New Year dawns, and in the grand old tradition, I have made a resolution to attend a more eclectic mix of gigs over the coming months. So rather than my normal diet of middle aged men churning out repetitive punk songs, I find myself in Cardiff Barfly listening to the gentler sounds of LUCKY DELUCCI.

First impressions are they are rather more pleasing on the eye than say Sham 69 or the UK Subs, as half of the band is made up of attractive young ladies - Sarah Hughes on keyboard & vocals, Clare Skidmore on flute and Faye Gibson also on keyboard and vocals. However, it should be noted that the remaining lads don’t appear to own a razor between them, albeit that this look doesn’t appeared to have held back Mumford & Sons career. They describe their sound as a combination of 60’s pop, folk and more experimental songs interwoven with plenty of melody, harmony and interesting arrangements. All of which appears at odd with the bands name, coming as it does from a little know 1930’s Chicago gangster.

The Barfly stage is not particularly big and it appears that every inch has been filled by a plethora of instruments, including three keyboards, flute, wind chimes and xylophone (or was it a glockenspiel?), all of which appear to be used in the set opener “Gypsy Caravan”. The music certainly has a laid back feel and a liberating quality that involves close interwoven harmonies from all the band members. It has an almost “trippy” quality that has you floating away downstream in a hallucinogenic state of euphoria.

Next number “Law of the Harvest” continues in a similar cheery vain and it should be mentioned that the bands excellent performance was even more remarkable considering normal bass player Mark Flanagan was unable to attend. His position for the night was ably filled by Jon Rogers.

Next number “The Old Sound of the River” opens with an almost waltz like tempo that for some reason reminded me of the theme music from Camberwick Green. Lead singer Josef Prygodziz (a good Welsh name) has a gentle lilt to his vocals and overall the feel of the song is similar to a warm summer day spent by the river drinking cider - sunny, warm and relaxing.

Complimented by the sterling backbeat supplied by drummer Rich Chitty the gentle sounds continued with “Winter on the Moon” and “Bright Beams of Light”. Normally by now my tinnitus would have been playing up, but tonight thankfully the only bells are contained on the stage. It may be due to the number of instruments and band members on show but I can see a similarity with Arcade Fire, albeit that Lucky Delucci are far more tender and tranquil than our Canuck cousins.

A nice bass line introduces the night’s last number in “December 1896”. The melodic tune contains a surprisingly catchy chorus of a similar feel to the famous reprise of the Killers “All These Things I’ve Done”, but with a much softer quality. It gave the evening a perfect ending and certainly maintained the feel good factor that permeates throughout the bands set.

So am I a convert away from a lifetime of punk debauchery? Well not quite, however if you like your evenings more laid back and with an ethereal quality, then I think Lucky Delucci are the band for you. They are constantly on the road playing all around South Wales and beyond, so go check them out and I guarantee you’ll end the evening more relaxed and with a smile on your face.

All the bands details, including gigs, can be found at their Myspace page: