lucylikesbands

"music and film are parallel experiences: they are linear, they are narrative"

Month: December, 2013

My Top 5 Gigs Of 2013

5. Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds with Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon and Paul Weller (The Teenage Cancer Trust Gig) at Royal Albert Hall, 23.03.13

A true moment in musical history-Noel Gallagher, Damon Albarn, Graham Coxon and Paul Weller playing Tender. It was absolutely gorgeous, as was Noel’s set alone. Playing mostly High Flying Birds’ songs, but with some Oasis tracks thrown in there, the room was absolutely filled with excitement. Particular favourites were Don’t Look Back In Anger (my favourite song ever), Fade Away, Everybody’s On The Run and The Death Of You And Me.

4. Tribes at The Roundhouse, 29.05.13

This was the only time I ever got to see Tribes live (apart from when they supported The Kooks in 2011), and they were absolutely phenomenal, as were their supports, Superfood and Wolf Alice. The set was wonderful, especially Dancehall, We Were Children and Girlfriend, and the crowd were excited and energetic (which was a good thing, despite some bruises from the moshpits). 

3. Miles Kane at Brixton Academy, 11.10.13

Supported by the fantastic Family Rain, Miles provided a lively, energetic set, and perhaps it was due to the fact that he seemed so happy to be performing, it made the audience happy to watch him. The set covered a decent amount of both albums, with particular gems being Colour Of The Trap, Don’t Forget Who You Are, Rearrange and First Of My Kind.

2. Peace at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, 06.12.13

Again, I’ll try not to say too much here, as I have previously written a blog post on this gig (https://lucylikesbands.wordpress.com/2013/12/08/peace-at-shepherds-bush-empire-review/), but Peace were supported by the brilliant Superfood and Drenge, and because of how fantastic the support bands were, it was somewhat expected that Peace would seem like almost a step down. This idea was very quickly demolished as soon as Peace came on stage and they began their set, as their set was perfect, and they played excellently, particular favourites being their cover of Last Christmas, Float Forever, Follow Baby and Lovesick.

1. Arctic Monkeys at Earl’s Court, 25.10.13

Arctic Monkeys are my favourite band, and have been for a few years now, and I’d only ever seen them once before this, at the O2 Arena, in October 2011, and so suffice to say I was ridiculously looking forward to this gig. And I was most definitely not let down. The support band, The Strypes, who I’d previously seen live and met in June, played brilliantly, and got everyone even more excited for the Monkeys to come on. When they did come on, to the intro of Do I Wanna Know?, they played an absolutely perfect set, and I was genuinely upset when it had to end. Songs that were particularly brilliant were Old Yellow Bricks, Do I Wanna Know?, Arabella, Cornerstone and Mardy Bum. I can’t describe how excited I am to be seeing them again, at Finsbury Park in May 2014.

Gigs that were incredible but didn’t quite make my top 5:

Haim at the Forum, Swim Deep at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, Vampire Weekend at the O2 Arena.

My December Playlist

So this is the playlist I’ve been listening to for most of December, some of these songs are old, some are kind of new, some I’ve loved for a long time and my love has been rekindled this month, some I’ve only just started listening to, etc…

I Haven’t Got My Strange//Arctic Monkeys

90 Mile Beach//Wolf Alice

White Sky//Vampire Weekend

Forever//Haim

Beach Sluts//Howler

Fuckabout//Drenge

Supersoaker//Kings Of Leon

Follow Baby//Peace

She//Wolf Alice

Alone, Together//The Strokes

Upset Boulevard//Spector

Bloodsports//Drenge

Only You Know//Arctic Monkeys (Dion Mucci Cover)

What A Shame//The Strypes

Best Of Friends//Palma Violets

Top 10 Albums Of 2013

I personally think 2013 has been a fantastic year for music, and it was really hard to pick my top 10, but here it is, along with my top 3 tracks from each album, for your enjoyment:

10. Snapshot by The Strypes

Snapshot is filled to the brim with catchy, upbeat tunes which will be stuck in your head for days and have this kind of energy that’s almost infectious. Despite the young of the band members, it’s clear that the Irish young lads clearly know a thing or two about 60s blues and 70s pub rock bands like Dr Feelgood, and can deliver the songs brilliantly live.

Band members: Ross Farrelly, Josh McClorey, Pete O’Hanlon and Evan Walsh

Release date: 9th September 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Hometown Girls, What A Shame, Blue Collar Jane

9. Comedown Machine by The Strokes

Despite the lack of publicity and no follow-up tour (something which angered many Strokes fans like myself), The Strokes’ fifth album Comedown Machine was brilliant. Although this album is very different to Is This It and in fact all of the other Strokes’ albums, it’s still wonderful and although that appears to be quite a controversial opinion, I stick by it.

Band Members: Julian Casablancas, Nick Valensi, Albert Hammond Jr, Nikolai Fraiture and Fabrizio Moretti

Release Date: 25th March 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Call It Fate Call It Karma, Welcome To Japan, One Way Trigger

8. Wish To Scream by Tribes

I know that Wish To Scream was not very well received by most people, even people who’d loved the band’s debut album Baby, and their follow-up did not even crack the top 40, and perhaps this was the reason for the band’s split (something I wrote a blog post about previously https://lucylikesbands.wordpress.com/2013/11/07/tribes-split-up-and-emotions-occur/), but nevertheless I absolutely adore this album, possibly even more than Baby. I feel like this album is just more honest and raw, along with a more emotional vibe which I think works beautifully with Johnny’s voice, and I for one, am still devastated that I’ll never see this album performed live again.

Band members: Johnny Lloyd, Dan White, Jim Cratchley and Miguel Demelo

Release date: 30th May 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Dancehall, It Never Ends, One Eye Shut

7. Drenge by Drenge

Drenge, in my opinion, is the perfect album for a sulky teenager like myself, as it has the kind of punky skattered vibe that we crave, and after seeing them support Peace at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, I can safely say that the songs all sound fantastic live.

Band members: Eoin and Rory Loveless

Release date: 19th August 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Fuckabout, People In Love Make Me Feel Yuck, Bloodsports

6. Don’t Forget Who You Are by Miles Kane

Miles Kane’s second album Don’t Forget Who You Are is filled with the infectious energy that perhaps his debut album Colour Of The Trap lacked, and I think this is fantastic in showing how Miles seems to be moving forwards with his sound without changing into a different artist. Personally, I adore both albums and can’t pick a favourite, but I do think that his first album is more emotional whereas his second is more energetic but still contains the same feel as the first one, which has worked brilliantly in his favour as it ensures that he’s not sounding to “samey” but hasn’t changed too dramatically. Not only this, but the songs from the new album work fantastically live.

Release date: 3rd June 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Darkness In Our Hearts, Give Up, Fire In My Heart

5. Days Are Gone by Haim

Haim’s debut album has received a lot of criticism from the press saying it sounds too produced, which I agree with for sure, but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. I think that some bands would not be able to pull off that kind of sound, but the three sisters from LA seem to be able to do it perfectly in my opinion and their album is filled with catchy songs that could rightfully be compared with the likes of Fleetwood Mac.

Band members: Danielle, Este and Alana Haim

Release date: 27th September 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Don’t Save Me, Honey And I, The Wire

4. Where The Heaven Are We by Swim Deep

Where The Heaven Are We is a beautifully atmospheric album that almost takes the listener away, as weird as that sounds. It’s the type of album you’d listen to when you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t get back to sleep-it’s calming, subtly uplifting, stunning.

Band members: Austin Williams, Cavan McCarthy, Tom “Higgy” Higgins and Zachary Robinson

Release date: 5th August 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Soul Trippin, She Changes The Weather, King City

3. Modern Vampires Of The City by Vampire Weekend

Vampire Weekend’s third album Modern Vampires Of The City is a work of pure beauty in my opinion. All the songs are so different to each other, but a theme of subtle sadness runs through them from obviously somber Hudson to seemingly happy but still holds an aspect of sadness in the message, Diane Young. Perfect to listen to on a summer’s evening, for some reason.

Band members: Ezra Koenig, Rostam Batmanglij, Chris Tomson and Chris Baio

Release date: 6th May 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Step, Unbelievers, Diane Young

2. In Love by Peace

In Love is a fantastic mix of upbeat, catchy riff-filled belters and softer, more raw tracks. Not only does this album transfer amazingly into a live set, but it’s also perfect to listen to at home with the lights off with a more chilled out atmosphere. In Love much like their fellow B-Town band Swim Deep’s album Where The Heaven Are We, has some very atmospheric moments, such as in songs like California Daze and Float Forever, but those moments are dispersed through real belters like Lovesick and Wraith.

Band members: Harrison and Sam Koisser, Doug Castle and Dominic Boyce

Release date: 25th March 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Float Forever, Wraith, Lovesick

1. AM by Arctic Monkeys

I could talk for years about my opinions on AM, and some of them I’ve already written about in another blog post (https://lucylikesbands.wordpress.com/2013/11/27/evolution-of-the-monkeys/) so I won’t go too deeply into my opinions or this post would be far too long. But in short, I think this album is incredible, and every single track on it is an utter masterpiece.

Band members: Alex Turner, Jamie Cook, Nick O’Malley and Matt Helders

Release date: 9th September 2013

My top 3 tracks from the album: Mad Sounds, Do I Wanna Know?, Snap Out Of It

5 Albums Which Very Nearly Made My Top 10:

Reflektor by Arcade Fire, Sequel To The Prequel by Babyshambles, BE by Beady Eye, Mechanical Bull by Kings Of Leon, 180 by Palma Violets.

Haim At The Forum Review (10.12.13)

Although Haim’s live performances have received very mixed reviews and opinions thrusted at it, I honestly think they’re one of the best bands I’ve seen live, and definitely in my top five gigs of 2013. Playing almost all of their debut and only album so far, Days Are Gone, along with quite a fantastic Fleetwood Mac cover, the three sisters exerted an infectious bout of energy that the audience caught onto early on. Whether this was due to these two nights at the Forum being the sisters’ first London dates or whether that energy is given out in all of their live performances is unknown to me, but what I do know is that their excitement to be there (shown especially in Este’s stage dive at the end) made the audience excited to be there, and it felt like a special and quite an intimate night.

There’s been a lot of criticism towards Haim’s live performance with the omnipresent line “they don’t sound like they do on record when they play live”, and although I do agree with this statement, I don’t think it should be used negatively. On record Haim sound far more produced and although I do like this, I think the rawness of their live shows and having the songs stripped back a bit was a very interesting and in my opinion, successful way of doing their live shows.

Overall, despite the criticisms given from others towards Haim’s live performances, I think they were absolutely fantastic and I would really recommend going to see them if you get the chance. 

Peace At Shepherds Bush Empire Review

I saw Peace on the 6th December at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, and it’s safe to say I had huge expectations. Although I haven’t been a dedicated fan of Peace since day one, for the last four months I’ve been listening to them religiously. As a result of this excitement, my friends and I arrived at the venue an hour early to ensure we got to the barrier (we did, securing a nice spot right in front of where Harrison Koisser situated himself.)

The first support band was Superfood, and upon going to the gig, I’d only heard one song by them, the eponymously titled “Superfood”. I liked the song but wasn’t expecting too much, but I was pleasantly surprised with how good their songs were, how well they played them live, and how the band had such a good stage presence. 

The second support band was Drenge, who I was really excited to see as I’d heard them quite a bit before and really liked. The two brothers played a brilliant set including such gems as “Fuckabout” and “People In Love Make Me Feel Yuck.” There were actually a couple of people standing near me who’d only come to the gig to see Drenge, and then left straight after before Peace even came on, which to me was a huge mistake because although Drenge were fantastic (and they were really fun to watch live, with Eoin and Rory both going a bit mental at points), Peace were phenomenal.

As soon as Peace begun the gig with “Waste of Paint” the whole crowd became alive and remained this way through the rest of the set. Harrison, Sam, Doug and Dominic played most of their album “In Love” with particular favourites being “Float Forever,” “Follow Baby,” and “Lovesick.” As well as this they played a few songs from their Delicious EP including 1998, which is personally my favourite song of theirs, and clearly many in the crowd felt the same as it went down fantastically. Not only this, but during one of the encores, they played a cover of “Last Christmas” which ensured the gig ended on a brilliantly happy note (as if it wouldn’t anyway).

Anyway, the whole gig was fantastic, and I was desperate to go back on the second night too. If you were there or at any of the other dates on their tour, let me know your opinions on it.