Following the recent release of their first new material in 25 years, Republica for another year headlined and curated Inpop festival marking their recent return to recording and touring. They opened their set on ‘Bloke’, its ’90s sound featuring electronica keys, and then performed the techno dance hit, ‘From Rush Hour with Love’, with singer Saffron playing tambourine throughout. They moved onto their 1997 hi-hat thumping single, ‘Drop Dead Gorgeous’, but which was too heavy sounding on the drums for the rest of the track.

Departing from her boyish vocals, Saffron sang the mellifluous ‘Rollerskates’ containing guitar parts from Johnny Male, with him also playing acoustic guitar in ‘Picture Me’. Republica, for one of the first times live, then premiered their new single, ‘New York’; a catchy jangly-pop, disco dance track with synth washes and whingy guitar. They performed the Killing Joke rhythm section of ‘Christiana Obey’; its brilliant Sisters of Mercy/The Cult sound that belongs in an ’80s darkwave genre, also complete with tumbling drumrolls and post-punk guitar. The band played their 1996 chart topping single, ‘Ready to Go’, with its razor sharp guitar and benefitted from a more ‘rowdy’ sound than the recorded mix.

11/11/23: Republica @ O2 Academy Islington, London.

Photos © E. Gabriel Edvy/Blackswitch Labs.

© Ayisha Khan.