Sunday, March 25, 2007208023498344383'#';''ee030338
I really effin' love Love Is All. They keep coming back to London and get more and more love with every visit. Last week they played at Cargo, which is where they played their second ever London show almost a year ago. It wasn't sold out but everyone really loved it, the crowd was ecstatic and going crazy on the dancefloor for the fuzzy, jazzy climaxes of LIA's repertoire. They hadn't been expecting such a response and were gushing between songs and even came back on for a four song encore. Josephine confessed that they'd put all their best songs in the main set and performed "their worst songs" for the encore. The songs weren't at all bad, but that wouldn't have made a difference - such was the mood that evening. The band supported Maximo Park on their recent UK tour, which will hopefully have won them some new fans. Some may even buy their new single, out tomorrow on 7". It's a double A-side! It's Ageing Had Never Been His Friend on one side and a cover of The Pastel's Nothing to be Done on the other.
Tuesday, March 20, 2007Sugar Sugar Honey
The Sugars are rock'n'roll. They work crappy day jobs and gig by night. When I saw then A MONTH AGO (this is how behind I'm getting!) at Bloomdbury Bowling Lanes they had already done a full day's work back in Leeds and were driving up first thing the next morning to do another one. That is rock'n'roll. Also rock'n'roll (in the classic sense) was the venue...an on-site diner, karaoke rooms, swirly carpets, loads of fit fifties rocker boys, rocker girls and housewives. Hairnets and high-waists galore. It's definitely my favourite subculture at the moment - everyone is so immaculate and sexy. The Sugars played a blistering 25 minute set of their signature garage rock with call-and-response vocals ending on their single (#6 in the Indie charts they told us) Monsters, which was, as previously stated, monstrous. Look how good they look:
Wow. Hot stuff.
Monday, March 19, 200715 cans of spray-paint
Oh Conor Oberst. You were the most fly of the angst-ridden indie poster boys, but something was different on Friday night at Koko. Your hair was longer, your shirt smarter, your back more hunched. You seemed even more angst-ridden than before, more under-the-influence. When you last played in London it was 5 days after 7th July 2005 and there was a bomb scare outside the venue before the gig. You put on one of the strongest, most emotional shows I've ever witnessed, especially the climax of Easy/Lucky/Free when you told us to be brave. Friday was strange, you seemed less in touch, a little less passionate. I hope it was just jetlag, in fact, I'm sure it was because your new songs are so good. I was worried you were turning soft after reading that this would be the album that would take you to the mainstream. They were so dark, wow. I can't wait to see you again in New York at the Town Hall in May! Oh yes!
p.s. I love Four Winds. Listen to it here.
Tuesday, March 13, 2007What's up with Miss Jackson?
With only two weeks of teaching left of my academic career and finals and deadlines approaching, my blogging drive is somewhat lacking. Nevertheless, I present to you The Long Blondes at the Astoria. Almost a month ago. When I saw them at the Mean Fiddler in October I left happy that they were getting big and sad, as I felt that they had compromised a bit of integrity to be a bit sluttier. I left their biggest ever headline show at the Astoria squashed but elated. I'd been worrying it was fizzling out for them when the epic Giddy Stratospheres failed to get in the Top 30. But the crowd went mad for them, everyone was singing the lyrics back at Kate with as much attitude as she was giving out. I felt that the gig was some kind of transition. Confident, assured, arena-style lighting and stage set up, glitter balls everywhere, they emphasised the Blondie-esque disco moments more than before, with epic-disco B-side Five Ways To End It taking pole position as the second last song to be played.
More than ever Kate was singled out as the focal point of the band. In fact, for most of the gig there was hardly any lighting on Emma, Reenie, Screech and Dorian who are all every bit as cool as Kate. I guess they're going for the classic iconic frontperson idea, which is fine, but it seems a shame to have the others in the background. Anyway, that tour pretty much marked the end of promoting UK releases from Someone To Drive You Home and the LBs will be focusing their energies on the rest of Europe this Spring. Hop over to their MySpace for the dates.