The Maccabees, Bombay Bicycle Club, The Big Pink, The Drums
Emma Murphy 13/02/2010
Taking to the stage first are New Yorkers The Drums, naturally exuberant, the robotic moves of lead singer Jonathan Pierce around the stage exhibit the definite influence of Joy Divison and Ian Curtis'. 'Let's go surfing' sees the crowd joyfully jump around and clap enthusiastically for this lively band. It's easy to see why they have had much press attention lately, a lively bouncy set with songs such as ”Don't Be a Jerk Johnny' and 'Saddest Summer' standing out. A completely flawless set that leaves you wondering what the band has lined up next after their Summertime EP.
Glancing back on the 90s when the airwaves where a swarm of Oasis, Ocean Colour Scene and Blur bands, one band namely Mansun appeared, looking and sounding as if they had just landed on Earth from Mars, Mansun really where a totally different take on the indie scene. Enter then The Big Pink, a totally refreshing sound and look on the all too generic music scene of late. Having taken their name from The Band's debut album Music From The Big Pink, you might expect some sort of homage to The Band but no with tunes such as 'Too Young To Love' which is full of a layered sounds, that could have easily come off The Charlatans Some Friendly era. An intriguing set with extreme sound, dirty guitars. Robbie Furze, Big Pinks front man has an air of rebellion and Milo Cordel, keyboards and synthesizer creates a thread of creeping anticipation through-out their performance especially on new single 'Velvet'. This delightfully distorted noise is very Black Rebel Motorcycle Club esque, the young girl stood in front of me who is more concerned with her hair band and high heels sticking to the floor whispers to her boyfriend 'err I don't like these, they're too noisy' YES, great an even better reason to embrace The Big Pink, the band have utter anticipation at their finger tips, a refreshing alternative to allot of the dribble out there at present. AMEN for Big Pink invasion.
Having previously listened to Bombay Bicycle Club's debut 'I Had The Blues But I shook Them Loose' album, I already have a preconceived idea that BBC are sure to be great on a live stage, the album is instantly loveable, and catchy but unfortunately they proved to be somewhat of an anti-climax, if they could have upped their tempo by merely an inch they could have easily gone from boring to brilliant.'Lamplight' and 'Cancel on Me' were performed with an air of confidence for such a young band which have the air about them to be something of a success. I'd like to think that I caught the band on a bad day and that Jack Steadman's vocals wouldn't have appeared to drone on and on if the band where caught on another night but they certainly lacked lustre live.
Last and by no means least, are headliners The Maccabees, two albums behind them, a collaboration with Roots Manuva and a drummer in rehab, it seems as if The Maccabees have jumped straight into the deep end of the music industry but with experience comes buoyancy, self-assured enough to cover an excellent rendition of the Orange Juice's 1983 hit 'Rip it up', a level of maturity can be seen with the latest album 'Wall of Arms' with songs like 'Love You Better' and 'Wall of Arms' creating a lively atmosphere amongst the crowd, it appears that everyone at the gig where eagerly waiting for the headliners and The Maccabees certainly delivered a top performance, well worth waiting for, all in all a top NME gig.