Live: iDKHOW BUT THEY FOUND ME // Electric Ballroom, London
Ahead of their Main Stage Reading and Leeds Festival appearances, iDKHOW wowed the London crowd playing their biggest headline show to date.
“This is unreal”, I think as I watch the crowd build up outside a few hours before the show starts. For a band lost in time, I DON’T KNOW HOW BUT THEY FOUND ME are quite the phenomenon. Despite being a band for technically just over two years, and keeping it secret for most of that time, they have already had their fair share in shaping the alternative music scene. After performing in bands such as Panic! At The Disco, and Falling In Reverse, respectively, and putting their association with the renowned names aside, there’s no denying that what iDKHOW have got going on now is special.
True to their signature flowery aesthetics, the duo’s floral attire seems to be matching perfectly with bouquets of flowers flooding the room. The atmosphere is palpable and the crowd is excited and emotional as I see tears being shed in the first row and beyond. Long-time friends, vocalist and bassist Dallon Weekes and drummer Ryan Seaman have their way of making everyone feel comfortable and welcome and the show does, indeed, feel like a family reunion.
Heavily influenced by past eras, iDKHOW gracefully balance between ‘old’ and ‘new’, incorporating 80s-inspired elements into modern soundscapes. Synthesising their own brand of music, their sound sparks with a fresh vision and innovative approach while evoking a sense of nostalgia that we have all got to love when it comes to music. Adding sardonic twists in to their lyrics, there’s a tinge of bite and unfiltered honesty too, something very much needed and appreciated in the digital age.
Treating us to some fan favourites, Do It All The Time quickly sets the energetic tone for the night with its groovy bass lines and scarce electronics, whilst Bleed Magic speeds things up a bit, flowing with vibrant synths and propulsive drums. “It’s officially the largest show we’ve played. They said: ‘Your band name is too long. Your music is too strange. You are too old to be on stage.’ But you’re the proof. It’s something I like to call magic”, Dallon exclaims, acknowledging the band’s journey so far and the obstacles they’ve had to overcome since day one.
Dropping a few surprises into the mix, we are graced with a cover of Debra by Beck which charms with down-tempo beats and Dallon’s radiant falsetto. Elsewhere in the set, the band’s version of Iggy Pop (Hot IQs) takes us back in time to the early noughties, and as explained by the singer, it requires “rhythm, enthusiasm, and choreography”. The band plays a brand new song as well, Lights Go Down which serves some upbeat disco vibes, and it wouldn’t be an iDKHOW show without a few tracks from The Brobecks’ (Dallon’s former musical project) catalogue either.
Full of charm and charisma, the dynamic between the two is truly captivating. Men of many talents, the song Visitation Of The Ghost sees Ryan on bass duties, whilst Dallon takes a trek through the room to the delight of the crowd. “Thanks for giving this band a chance”, we hear as they dive into their absolute hit Choke. Inviting Jake from the supporting act, White Room, on stage for Nobody Likes The Opening Band, the choice couldn’t have been more fitting as the track builds into a massive singalong.
Rounding the set off with Boring (The Brobecks), the band leaves us in a pensive mood as mellow melodies echo throughout. As beautiful as the song is, one must disagree with the lyrics because iDKHOW are anything but boring. Hopefully, we’ll have a full album to sink our teeth into the next time they visit this side of the Atlantic.
Photos: Kasia Osowiecka