Led by the charismatic and energetic singer Eno Williams, Ibibio Sound Machine’s infectious mix of African influenced funk/disco captivated a packed Clwb Ifor Bach with a quite breathless set that never failed to let up leaving their audience desperate for more, despite dancing their feet off.
It was quite an achievement getting all the band on the smallish stage to start with and quite how they managed to perform without clattering into another band member or piece of kit was enthralling to watch as singer Eno danced throughout the bands snappy and high tempo set.
Since their first album release in 2014 and the release of this years Doko Mien, the band have built up a considerable following finally getting the acclaim that their music and musicianship so rightly deserves. With a brass section that would be the envy of any group and a punchy, funky rhythm section to boot, it proved a perfect blend of sounds topped with some clever synth/keyboards that gave some of the songs a very retro dance feel.
They opened with Sweet Like Sugar with its distinctive Wah Wah/Fuzz guitar from the wonderfully attired Kari Bannerman, who with Eno were the main focal point of the evening. Not that they put their fellow band mates in the shade, who themselves shone brightly with each stepping up with equally important contributions with some seriously funky bass and driving percussion.
Song followed song in quick succession giving people little chance to catch their breath with the whole floor bouncing in unison and few seriously wondering if it continued, then the whole room, band and all, would end up on the floor below.
Stand out tracks in a quick brilliant set were hard to choose yet the soulful and more subdued I Know That You Are Thinking Of Me and the very Stax-sounding Power Of 3 were certainly the pick from an excellent bunch, whilst the last song Basquiat perfectly summed up what this band is all about, a melting pot of sounds and rhythms that couldn’t fail to get the feet tapping, at the very least.