On a Thursday night, I was drawn to the lovely Schokoladen in Berlin-Mitte, a small, cosy and very reasonably priced cultural centre off polished Torstraße. Being a good place to discover new or underground artists in a small setting, the venue had two promising indie bands on that night: Pale Honey, a grunge-y girl duo from Sweden, and LA indie-pop trio Light FM.
Curiously, the former were playing second, the ‘headliner’ spot, despite not even having an album out (their debut is scheduled for May 5th), while Light FM have been around since ’99, putting out five albums in their career. But apparently, hype beats longevity in the minds of the bookers. With their Fiction EP and latest hit single Youth, Pale Honey have definitely gained some attention for the upcoming self-titled debut album. Light FM, meanwhile, were touring their recent Pointless EP, which had some catchy, shoegaze-y tracks to offer. The trio, comprised of Josiah Mazzaschi on guitar and vocals, Nicki Nevlin on bass and Alexa Brinkschulte on drums, played an enjoyable set of synth-heavy indie-pop full of strong melodies.
The club only really filled up when Pale Honey came on, though. Which was a shame because personally I liked Light FM’s set much better. Despite the strong singles they had put out, Pale Honey’s show seemed lifeless, the music bland and interchangeable. I tried to listen for a few tracks, but eventually decided to call it a day and leave early. The rest of the audience didn’t seem to mind – maybe it just wasn’t my kind of music.