Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Pavement @ Brixton Acadamy 10/5/10

Surrounded by devoted Pavement fans this was a looooong evening. A full 2 hour set which I must admit, I ducked out of before the encores at 90 mins. Still - they sounded great - even though the lasting memories I have of them are of tedious festival shows. I think they really need a "venue" instead of a festival to carry the sound. Mind you, I had to stand right at the back as the bass drum was ear drum perforatingly loud. All your favourite songs were there - as were some less favourites. Trigger Cut - brilliant... Shady lane.. Zzzz... These guys still look cool too - I think you can still rock if you still have all your hair.

Not a sell out by any means - if you want to see 'em this week just pitch up at Brixton and snap up a touted ticket for peanuts. (4/5)

Or buy Pavement tickets online - if you like the idea of ticket in hand - from www.gigsniffer.com

Deerhunter @ Heaven 6/5/10

Another band that are not that exciting on record... but live.. well I was reminded of shoe-gazing moments of the early 90's for a few songs. Long drawn out repetetive noise - which is a good thing. A long 90 mins set was perhaps pushing it a bit, but well worth seeing. (3/5)

Deerhunter tickets the second they go on sale on www.gigsniffer.com

Drugstore @ ICA 5/5/10

A great gig build up provided by Isabel's tweets over the last few months.. gathering the new band.. rehearsals..the late bar...the Tap-esque rider.. and I think the nerves were on show a little. For some reason "the band" had instructed her to drink less and speak less on stage.. which is a real shame as half the fun of a Drugstore gig these days is the Monteiro banter and ranting. In a band which is, I suspect, a full-on dictatorship, the Monterio needs to stamp her authority pretty quick on these new guys. It's her voice and wit after all that keep Drugstore burning after all these years.

The new band was slightly shaky in places we thought, but in an endearing kind of way. A few more live shows should settle everything down to the Drugstore of old. And the new songs? As melancholic as ever....thank god. (4/5)

Drugstore tickets snapped up through wegottickets via www.gigsniffer.com

Bear in Heaven @ Lexington 20/4/10

First time at the Lexington - what a great venue! Great sound.. good view, nice cosy size. I've listened to a bit of Bear in Heaven and found it quite, well, un-exciting, so wasn't expecting to be thrilled here tonight. These guys are a better live prospect than their records suggest though - a bigger sound and so much more engaging. Worth the journey for me, but I think once is enough. (3/5)

We snapped our Bear in Heaven tickets up smartly through www.gigsniffer.com as ever.

Thursday, 4 March 2010

Antlers @ Union Chapel 3/3/10

Another quiet one at the church. Holy hell my phone went off and that wasn't good. I've listened to Antler's Hospice LP a fair few times and it makes for interesting listening... a cross between Belle and Sebastian and Anthony and the Johnsons. But does it work live? Well - its ok but its not rock n roll that's for sure. It's like watching a film score played live with no film. If only there had been some visuals or a bit more stage presence as I hate to say it guys it did just become a bit, well, .... boring. Sorry guys. Maybe I'm just getting a bit impatient in my old age, but I couldn't just help but feel when does this actually start? I know it's serious subject matter boys but lighten up a bit! (3/5)

Dum Dum Girls, Veronica Falls @ Madame Jojos

First time here in a while that the place is actually packed. Of course being such a great venue you can still slip stright down the front for a great viwe of the loft stage - first up Veronica Falls, who soundpretty good for such young bunch - a demonic sounding Shop Assistants. The reverb on the vocals though is so fierce it sounds like shes singing in a oil drum in a cave. Presumably to cover up a rather flat voice...shame. Here's a video to have a little listen... (3/5)

Dum Dum Girls - well there's a lot of leg on display. A lot of long leg. But is that enough to carry it off? Well post gig on XFM she was being interviewed by John Kennedy and was just a bit giggly, saying she just started writing a few songs to fill in some hours while her old man was away. And I think it shows... they won't be progressing out of these small venues but are fun to watch. Check out those legs in the video (3/5)

Ok two 3/5's, but a great night out....

Cymbals Eat Guitars @ Hoxton Kitchen 24/2/10

Some else who insists on a slow and deliberate tuning of all 6 strings before every song. I wouldn't mind but at this volume no one is ever going to tell - 'cos ear splitting loud is the order of the day in the here. He also does an awful lot of shouting - to the point that his neck's about to explode. (2/5)

Thursday, 25 February 2010

Suede Gig at the 100 club - by AUCTION! is this the new way to sell tickets?

Just sniffed on Gigsniffer... Ticketmaster are selling tickets to this by auction. I wonder if this is the way ticket sales will go. As every gig these days sells out with half the tickets going to touts for ebaying the implication is that tickets are just not expensive enough. So can the agencies see more of the cash which is currently being raked by the touts?

It's not a route I'd like to go down - I'd much prefer we got better at anti-touting which, let's face it, is easy to do but no one wants to do it. If the venues actually took RETURNS that would be start, then there would always be some tickets on the door. The danger of the auction route is we end up paying a whopping 45 notes to see Dumpy's Rusty Nuts at the Joiners. We know this is possible as that's what Seatwave, Viagogo, Getmein etc are charging and if they're charging it then some idiot must be paying it. Ok the touts will be squeezed out but only because the agency and tout roles would be all merged into one... tickettout.com here we come.

Wednesday, 24 February 2010

Girls @ Scala 24/02/10

After a long winter break with a complete dearth of gigs we're back with a packed program over the next few weeks. First up, Girls. So I downloaded some songs and gave them a listen, and original they are not. I don't think I've ever heard an album before and picked up so many tunes that I've heard before - two of which are Jesus and Mary Chainer's. Big Bad Mean is Kill Surf City, Darling's lyrics are delivered to Quo's "well here we are and her we are and here we goooooo" (Rockin' all over the WORLD man!). Then back to the Mary Chain for Ghost Mouth which rips of the distinctive start of Just Like Honey. Then they rip off Iggy for a title (who would call their own song "Lust For Life" - it's bound to be a disappointment). Then they rip themselves off... Curls is just a slower version of Darling. Vocally the singer is fairly feeble and lyrically it's all a bit 6th form poetry (I'm just crazy/and totally mad/im just crazy/and fucked in the head). Tcch.

But this is a gig review, not an album review. Live they are actually a better prospect than the songs suggest. They CAN play, and he loves to stick all those arpeggiated chords in, which he does quite well, but it does just sound like someone strumming a new guitar in guitar shop. Just getting a feel for the neck I expect. Plus he's into re-tuning every bloody string between every bloody song - it's all a bit "David Gray" (cf. Luke Haines). For a half hour slot it would all be pleasant enough, but they do milk it for the best part of an hour and a glance round the audience shows the majority of people are texting, chatting or just staring vacantly ahead.

Back for the encore and Kill Surf City and they butcher their "own" song as they just can't do noise. Returning to the mass arpeggiations (if the word does not exist, it needs to for these boys) and what sounds like Rain Drops Keep Falling on My Head. This is just too much to stand and so the sniffer sneaks out the back.

I'm obviously not the only one to make JMC comparisons - as standing in front of me were two twenty-somethings the dead spit of the Reid brothers C1986. Hang on - they're meant to be IN the bloody band!!! (2/5)