REVIEW: Brooke Bentham @ The Brighton Dome, 30/11/2019

Rising star Brooke Bentham wows audience in Brighton with a moving, nostalgic and blissful performance

A microphone attached to a stand
Credit: Matthias Wagner

Brooke Bentham is bringing back the sound of the 90s. With a couple of well-received EPs already under her belt, she seems to be succeeding. Her influences are clear in her blissful, dreamlike sound. Indie rock legends such as Mazzy Star and Yo La Tengo come to mind when listening to her music. Her debut album Everyday Nothing has been preceded by a promising single and news about her collaboration with The Coral’s frontman Bill Ryder-Jones. Needless to say, I was excited to see her show at the Brighton Dome.

The throbbing purple lights from the stage helped set the tone for the brooding indie rock ballads to come. Bentham sung passionately about self-discovery on All My Friends Are Drunk. The crooning vocals and shimmering guitars reminded me of shoegaze bands such as Slowdive. Losing, Baby is another shoegaze-inspired song, but Bentham incorporated punchy drums to cut through the walls of guitar. This was another example of Bentham’s emotionally driven songwriting. The refrain “I’m losing, baby. I’m stopping, baby” at the end of the song was one of the most moving moments of the show.

Bentham continued to dip her toes into different styles throughout her set. Out Of My Mind was a darker song featuring a grumbling bass line and crashing drums. But she countered this harshness with delicate guitar work and elegant vocals on the song Oliver. Bentham was incredibly humble and charming throughout the show. She thanked the audience repeatedly and got them excited for Sam Fender’s set. 

She ended the show with her latest single Perform For You, which gave the audience a taste of what’s to come on her debut album. It promises to deliver more poignant songwriting and luscious instrumentation. Despite the obvious influences, Bentham proved that her music is more than just 90s nostalgia. With her biting, cynical lyrics and interesting blend of genres, she has crafted her own identity within the indie rock scene.

Orlando Glendenning

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