REVIEW: Cuckoo Clocks, Lantern Theatre, Sheffield

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As we made our way into Sheffield’s oldest theatre, we were greeted with sounds from many decades ago via a wind up gramophone courtesy of Tim the DJ resplendent in top hat and tails.

The perfect atmosphere for the album launch of the Cuckoo Clocks debut long player The Madness of Order. Rather than a gig it’s more of a show, which befits the wonderful surroundings of this jewel of a theatre set deep in Nether Edge.

We were treated to a compere come juggler and a puppeteer before the music began with excellent Shaking Whips, a duo boasting short sharp songs often with angry lyrics.

During a 15 minute interval the audience decanted to the cooler courtyard before returning to be greeted by the video of Odd Per Clock, with the screen filling the stage before it rose to reveal the sextet playing live. Looking like a masquerade ball with the band wearing masks, the soaring temperatures meant most were discarded after the first few songs with the exception of bassist Nicky Bee, he of Human League fame, who complete with black cape bravely wore his throughout.

The main focal point was charismatic lead vocalist Paul Infanti, but the top notch line up also includes the wonderful Sophie Toes on keys and former Van Morrison drummer Andrew Flude on percussion.

A feature of the theatre is wonderful acoustics which enabled the clockwork rhythms, quirky beats and four part harmonies of such gems as Cuckoo Time and Looking In The Fridge to soar round the room.

With a packed audience singing along closer Sacred Song came all too soon but suffice to say The Madness Of Order was launched in some style.