Taking to Pop Recs in support of the release of their debut album, Chaotica, Beccy Owen and the Refugee’s show does many things tonight; though its principle result is the insight it provides into the creative process and how it supports the challenges which arrive from mental health struggles. Centred around themes of trying to manage a life heavily impacted by the mania of mood swings, Owen, and the Refugee’s, work is both intimate and revealing.
Commencing the show with three solo songs (including standout ‘You keep flooding in’), each of which is interspersed with brave exposures about her own demons, the joy of Owen is her ability to be open, humorous and heart-breaking at the same time: she lets us see both the light and the dark side of mania.
Following the solo introduction, tonight’s four-piece version of ‘Refugee’ plug in on song four, and Chaotica opener ‘Tawny Maker’ and spend the evening taking us through the album track by track. Showcasing the album’s interesting themes and revolving musical structures, The Refugee are on fine form tonight in only their second show together in this structure. Second tack ‘Scattershot’, with its interesting texture changes and vocal lines, stands out on an evening full of brave musical choices and personal stories.