Dry Cleaning


For a band that as yet have only put out a handful of tracks across 2 EPs, Dry Cleaning have accrued a monstrous number of fans. Arriving early at the upstairs room of Gullivers, I am shocked that already I can barely get through the door. Manchester is the first stop on their latest tour and they have sold out the venue, along with numerous other cities coming up (top tip – get tickets fast if you want to see them!).

Dry Cleaning aren’t the first on the bill though, and it is good to see that this large turnout can show support to fellow Londoners Pozi. Pozi comprise of Tom Jones on bass, Toby Burroughs on drums and Rosa Brook on violin, with all sharing vocal duties. They are a punk band without guitars. Instead, the DIY-style violin flicks between drones and staccato scratches to pierce through the driving basslines. It is rather unique but doesn’t feel gimmicky at all. It adds to the often melancholic nature of the tracks, such as ‘KCTMO’, about the Grenfell disaster. They stand out from the crowded punk scene and hold the crowd’s full attention at Gullivers throughout their set.

Dry Cleaning are made up of a mix of styles, both musically and in the performance of each band member. Singer Flo Shaw stares with an expressionless gaze, front and centre stage, flanked by bassist Lewis Maynard and guitarist Tom Dowse who swing their instruments and bodies around in a much more dynamic fashion. The way each member carries themselves reflects in the music. The vocals are monotone and emotionless, while the bass and guitar add a bounce everyone can groove to.

The riffs are simple but insanely catchy. ‘Magic of Meghan’ has a riff you could imagine taking over as the song burgeoning guitarists yearn to play first. The lyrics are oftentimes in contrast with the music played. Flo’s hypnotic stream of consciousness and monologuing style flits between the humorous, anger and the morose. With lyrics gained mostly by sifting through YouTube comment sections and advertisements, ‘Goodnight’ is a perfect example of this. The off kilter lyrics together with its brisk bassline and energetic rising guitar is a highlight of the evening.

With a deadpan delivery through every word and phrase, you can never quite tell what is truth or sarcasm. You have to make up your own mind. They are an interesting band, even with the monotone delivery throughout, the set never feels stale. The diverse palette the lyricism is drawn from, backed by fun post-punk riffs, make the night engaging to the end.

Dry Cleaning: Bandcamp | Facebook