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Video of the Moment #610: Bombay Bicycle Club

 
By on Monday, 24th October 2011 at 6:00 pm
 

Bombay Bicycle Club take a stripped back approach to the promo video for ‘Still’, from their new album ‘A Different Kind of Fix’. I reviewed the album last month, and you can read my thoughts on it here. John also caught them on tour in Lincoln the second week of October. And you can catch them on their just announced jaunt of the UK in April; all the details are here.

Is “Jack Steadman is literally a God” as voted by nearly 100 people on YouTube? Watch below and find out.

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1PloNGzuEI[/youtube]

 

Bombay Bicycle Club / April 2012 UK Tour

 
By on Monday, 24th October 2011 at 3:00 pm
 

Bombay Bicycle Club have announced a massive UK tour for April 2012. Tickets go on sale this Friday (28th of October) at 9 AM. The tour will call at:

Sunday 15th April 2012 – Cambridge Corn Exchange
Monday 16th April 2012 – Brighton Centre
Tuesday 17th April 2012 – Wolverhampton Civic Hall
Thursday 19th April 2012 – York Barbican
Friday 20th April 2012 – Edinburgh Corn Exchange
Saturday 21st April 2012 – Liverpool University
Monday 23rd April 2012 – Plymouth Pavilions
Tuesday 24th April 2012 – Portsmouth Guildhall
Wednesday 25th April 2012 – Leicester De Montfort Hall
Friday 27th April 2012 – Blackpool Empress Ballroom
Saturday 28th April 2012 – London Alexandra Palace

 

Live Review: Bombay Bicycle Club at Lincoln Engine Shed – 9th October 2011

 
By on Friday, 14th October 2011 at 4:30 pm
 

To the twinkling tones of ‘Shuffle’, Bombay Bicycle Club came onstage in Lincoln. And to what a roar they came on. The last time I had the pleasure to watch these boys properly was in a somewhat different setting to the Engine Shed they were playing this time. It was part of their acoustic tour in support of their acoustic album ‘Flaws’, and it was at Union Chapel in London. Instead of moshing punters, placed bums on the pews of the chapel awaited their sermon.

‘Shuffle’ was greeted to the kind of reaction their classics would be. Quite good for a track that was only released earlier in summer. That was to set the tone for the entire gig: full of tracks played top an adoring audience who sang along to every last note. ‘Dust on the Ground’ was welcomed warmly as the subtle guitars of Jack Steadman floated across the swathes of sweaty teenagers who crowded the front of the Engine Shed. The energy of the band was easily noticeable as they swung from ethereal melodies into jittering guitar solos, swinging their bodies around the stage.

Steadman played his usual awkward kid with glasses routine, but we aren’t buying it any more. We know that he is one of the most confident frontmen around now. With his cheeky grins and thank yous, he holds the crowd in the palm of his hand. Acoustic track ‘Ivy and Gold’ was given an injection of electricity as the band powered through this crowd pleaser.

‘Magnet’ was ferocious and the mosh pits even opened for a few seconds, as Steadman and Jamie McColl combined brilliantly on this track, just as McColl managed to hit every note with his eyes closed. The biggest cheer of the night though was reserved for ‘Always Like This’, with its brilliant sing-along chorus, and almost country-esque beat. By this point most of the crowd seem knackered but nothing will hold them back from screaming every last word of this song back at their idols.

It’s only the second time Bombay Bicycle Club have played Lincoln, but my bet is it will be their last. This band is destined for arena stardom. If Frank Turner and White Lies can headline Wembley, why can’t these guys? Catch them on their current club tour while you can (details here).

 

MP3 of the Day #412: Givers

 
By on Wednesday, 5th October 2011 at 10:00 am
 

The Givers‘ track ‘Meantime’ has been remixed by Bombay Bicycle Club. Personally, I really dislike the turning the female vocals cartooney (think MC Tigarah’s contribution to ‘Ishin Deshin (You’ve Got to Help Yourself), featured on Keane‘s ‘Night Train’ EP) and the overall effect sounds like bad ’80s music. But you might think differently – listen to it below and if you like it, download it for your personal collection.

The promo video for ‘Meantime’ was featured as a Video of the Moment at the end of August; view the post here.

 

Leeds 2011: Day 3 (John’s Roundup)

 
By on Tuesday, 13th September 2011 at 2:00 pm
 

The final day of Leeds Festival 2011 brought with it dryness and a relative calm that I hadn’t seen all weekend, no frantic rushing to tents. Just good music. Well, for most of the day anyway… Speaking of music that just is not good in the slightest, my first port of call for the day was the Main Stage to watch Pigeon Detectives. Beginning with their set with arguably their most popular track ‘I Found Out’ was their first mistake, as they had my attention for that brief point. But from then on though, it was as I expected. A set as tragically flawed as the band themselves, riddled with album tracks that nobody cares about at home, let alone at a festival. Truly a thoroughly dour start to my final day.

It was only fair that after such musical torture, I was gifted with the brilliant music of Seasick Steve, doing what he does best, getting crowds to love him with his brilliant style of DIY bluegrass rock ‘n’ roll. Halfway through his set he does what anybody who is third on the Main Stage at a festival wishes they can do to get the crowd going: nothing huge, just something like bring on a member of the greatest rock ‘n’ roll band of all time, Led Zeppelin. Yes. John Paul Jones. With JPJ on bass, Steve hammering his bizarre instruments and a drummer with a longer beard than Steve himself, the trio on stage was a force. ‘Can’t Teach An Old Dog New Tricks’ sounded positively fierce and ‘Thunderbird’ was easily the highlight of the first few bands of the day.

Two Door Cinema Club strolled onstage, and within seconds girls all around me were clambering over each other to be as close to these Irish charmers. Two Door surely could not have anticipated what a success ‘Tourist History’ was going to be, so the thousands upon thousands of people mimicking every track back at them must have been quite a shock. [Editor’s note: not really to us at TGTF. We wrote about a couple of their songs in a Kitsune sampler in January 2010 and then mused on the actual album 2 months later.] Their delivery was fantastic though, and throughout the gig they had the crowd placed firmly within the palms of their hands.

To follow Two Door in the form they are in can hardly be seen as an undaunting task. So it probably helped that the guys to do it are the most seasoned pros on the bill: enter Madness. Beginning with classic ‘One Step Beyond’, the crowd were already in full swing, gone were the attempts at mosh pits and in their place, everyone doing a strange minimalistic rendition of the running man. Their set was riddled with classics: ‘Baggy Trousers’ was greeted to a huge reception and ‘House of Fun’ was literally the most ‘fun’ song of the day.

From a band centred on dancing about like there’s no tomorrow to a band who in all honesty aren’t exactly the jolliest fellows around, this of course was the pioneers of emo kids Jimmy Eat World. Their set was by far too long for the amount of material they had; while ‘Bleed America,’ ‘The Middle’ and ‘Sweetness’ were fantastic, nobody cared about ‘Coffee and Cigarettes’, let alone enough to hear it when you could be heading over to see Bombay Bicycle Club…hey, wait a minute. That sounds like a good idea! So I did!

Bombay’s crowd was, as expected, huge, as is the hype around these nervous little boys. While they may not look the most confident bunch, they still manage to capture the crowd brilliantly. Sure, it helps that they have some seriously solid tune,s but I think the nervousness plays well for them. New single ‘Shuffle’ from their new album ‘A Different Kind of Fix’ (review here) sounded note perfect live and could easily grow into one of the biggest strings on their live bow. They finished with ‘Always Like This’ to bring an end to a set which they breezed through, the crowd hooked on every word.

Next up were co-headliners the Strokes (pictured at top), who turned out to be truly awful. They are a band with such a reputation but who managed to look as uninterested from the beginning as I became halfway through their dry, unimaginative set. Julian Casablancas looked as if he wanted to be anywhere else but here and that was how I started to feel as the hits faded into plugging of the new album. The one highlight had to be ‘Juicebox’, which added some much needed energy to the proceedings. Bar that, disappointing is the only word I can use to describe their set. Devoid of any showmanship, any invention.

 

Album Review: Bombay Bicycle Club – A Different Kind of Fix

 
By on Tuesday, 6th September 2011 at 12:00 pm
 

The prolific and seemingly inexhaustible Bombay Bicycle Club have come out with their third album, this one called ‘A Different Kind of Fix’. An interesting title, since after listening to this new effort a couple times, I’ve come to the conclusion the quartet wanted to come up with something that took the best of their first two albums (2009’s ‘I Had the Blues But I Shook Them Loose’ and 2010’s acoustic ‘Flaws’ [review here]) successful. Where ‘Flaws’ left me feeling cheated, wondering when their follow-up to the incredibly fun single ‘Magnet’ was going to materialise, if ever. Yet ‘A Different Kind of Fix’ presses all the right buttons, showing the band’s maturity of talent and indicates the band is not going anywhere any time soon.

The album begins with ‘How Can You Swallow So Much Sleep’, likely the best example on here of how the London band managed to marry the rock sensibility of ‘I Had the Blues…’ with the softer side of ‘Flaws’. Great lead vocals from Jack Steadman gently lead you into the tune that speeds up to a perfect tempo, with joyful guitars and drumming. The next track, ‘Bad Timing’, is no ‘Magnet’, but it’s an admirable return to form. This one, along with ‘Take the Right One’, rock harder and are certainly welcome to folks like me who didn’t take to the acoustic Bombay Bicycle of last year. The beginning of ‘Beggars’ certainly sounds like it could have been on ‘Flaws’, but thankfully the chorus and overall prevailing feeling is, dare I say it, nearly Mumford and Sons in slap-happiness.

What I definitely did not expect from these blokes: ‘Lights Out, Words Gone’. It’s like pulling back the curtains on the ‘80s, reminding me of Culture Club. Don’t run from this review. Stay with me here, please. Listen to it on Spotify, it’s like a 21st century ‘Do You Really Want to Hurt Me’. It’s genius. I don’t think any other band would even try this. What a risk. But it sounds fabulous. Even ‘Leave It’ and ‘What You Want’ sound like the band have been stuck in a time warp (early Noughties U2), but I won’t complain too much, because they have sweeping choruses. And remember what I said earlier, that this album was a crossroads between their first two albums? The acoustic stylings of ‘Flaws’ come through in ‘Fracture’ and album closer ‘Still’, though neither of which is particularly noteworthy.

‘Shuffle’, which was trotted out earlier in the summer as a taster of the new album, is in hindsight a strange choice for a single. Dissonant piano banging and the start and throughout, along with a really annoying chorus, can easily get your goat. It’s the only major disappointment I find on ‘A Different Kind of Fix’ and unfortunately the only reason why I didn’t give it a higher rating than 8 out of 10. I can’t with a good conscience give an album a stellar rating if the band (and/or their people) can’t make the right decision when it comes to choosing singles. Love it or hate it, you have to accept the fact that bands have to put their best foot forward when promoting new albums, and that’s the lead single. It’d be a terrible shame if people didn’t give this a chance because ‘Shuffle’ grated on their nerves.

8/10

‘A Different Kind of Fix’ is available now from Universal / Island.

 
 
 

About Us

There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF is edited by Mary Chang, who is based in Washington, DC. She is joined by writers in England, America and Ireland. It began as a UK music blog by Phil Singer in 2005.

All MP3s are posted with the permission of the artists or their representatives and are for sampling only. Like the music? Buy it.

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