Venue: The Brunswick Support Bands: Bird Eats Baby Date: 03/12/09 Bitter Ruin Video Launch You enter a darkened room, pick up your free glass of champagne and grab a few Quality Street for good measure. Scattered around the packed space are candle-lit tables, toy soldiers, chocolates, and video cameras. Softly illuminated is a large crowd of excited-looking people. Very-Scottish compere Jimmy starts off the night with a short ditty about being happy in Paris, and continues to bridge the gaps throughout the night with similar uke-centred comic genius, such as one of the best Star Wars themed songs I have ever heard. Then supporting are Birdeatsbaby, with their reclusive waltz-like classico-pop. The combination of melodic piano, cello and violin with lyrics about sex, violence and perversity is a sultry start to the evening and sets the deliciously sordid mood. Then we have a short talk from director of Bitter Ruin's first video, Mark Withers. Darkly comic 'Beware' tells a story of love grown a little too dangerous. Filmed for a budget of nothing (and in the end costing around £35 in props), Ben and Georgia appear as corpses singing their woes: Then, after riotous applause, we finally see the stars themselves. Ben warms up as Georgia lights candles, and they launch into a brief set of a few classic songs, and some brand new ones. Their delivery is what has drawn them so much attention on the circuit – Georgia's unassuming beautiful-girl innocence hides lungs like a set of bellows – and this Saturday they will be breaking the scene Stateside. IMG_3975 Part of their appeal is their undefinability: they are first and foremost musicians. They are also spectacularly well-dressed and wonderfully theatrical, synchronized to one another's movements and a pleasure to watch for their on-stage chemistry and drama. Their pitch-perfect delivery and sumptuous performance is no less genuine for its perfect rehearsal: new songs don't jar with old favourites, and Georgia admitting to making a huge mistake in one of the songs is undetectable. The set is broken up by a quiz: unsportsmanlike behaviour from a few tables aside, a wonderful way to not only involve the audience in what could have otherwise been a self-indulgent evening, but also to make your band far more memorable to everyone involved. The audience participation adds a sense of fun to what would otherwise have been simply a performance. And it works: both newcomers and old fans get into it, and as Ben tells me, their fans always come back for more. The second video of the night is for the soulful 'Soldier', a more serious take on the dark, desperate side of love, visualised by director Peter Regan using toy soldiers and a tiny paper ballerina, whom the band throw into a fire at the end. All very symbolic. IMG_3933 Asked how they felt the evening went, Ben's immediate response is 'Superb!' The idea of a screening had been completely new to them, and while they kept elements of their previous shows in place, such as the sweeties, the combination of music and videos allowed for them to mix up their set and experiment with newer songs. On their imminent departure for America, Georgia said that they were not so much excited as incredibly busy – the reality has not yet sunk in, as they still need to pack all the gear involved in tonight's performance. Based on the thrilling evening I have just experienced, I don't think they have a thing to worry about. What say you on this? Sound off in our Fourum!