We bump into Sink Ya Teeth on the steps outside the venue. There’s no mistaking the electro-punk duo, Gemma Cullingford and Maria Uzor in a black beret, shirt and braces. They’re looking for something to eat before they go onstage, I recommend the vegan burger and rush off to queue for them at The Green Door Store. I’m expecting a long wait, the line-up of Sink Ya Teeth, Big Joanie and Porridge Radio is an absolute dream.
Los Bitchos are first on, a lively opener for a female-fronted night. The Great Escape has always seemed so white-male-bands, it’s good to see Saturday night dedicated to women – and women of colour – at a prime venue.
It’s been a year since Sink Ya Teeth released their eponymous album. Mixing post-punk basslines with electronic music, it’s dance-punk with intelligence. Influenced by the various likes of S-Express, LCD Soundsystem and Shopping. Their return to Brighton is anticipated after a sold out show here in October.
Inside the place is packed, I’m in the front row but my view is blocked by two hyperactive photographers angling their SLRs. The stage lights switch from purple to neon green and the bassline sets the groove. There’s a properly clubby vibe, it’s deeply satisfying to dance to.
Maria Uzor is on vocals and her stage presence is electrifying. And slightly terrifying. This one’s about how you feel after a massive party, and she breaks into If You See Me, her detached stare is unnerving: “I feel a little depressed/ a little melancholy at best/ But it’s nothing I can’t handle/ With a little bit of rest.” She is deadpan, monologuing to the back of the room, to a vanishing point we can’t see.
On the album this is standout single, in here it’s one seamless groove, thumping and infectious. The crowd’s entranced, a fan next to me from London in a red t-shirt and matching red nails dances compulsively through the whole gig.
This one’s for the complainers she says, the ones who don’t do their job properly. Maria’s stance is striking, she twirls her drumsticks in the air like a majorette and her dancing takes on a structured, marching vibe.
The set is tight, and there’s controlled excitement and energy in the room. If electronic music is normally about techy guys behind laptops, Sink Ya Teeth are exploding that and making their own rules.