Maximo ParkEdit this event
- ULU, Camden Town »
London may well be burning but who gives a shite if you’re stuck “up there” in the wilderness of the North? A generation of guitar-kids from the once vital region that gave the World trend-setting bands, like The Beatles and The Smiths, have had to sit back and watch the national press wank over the London revolution. While the stories of future rock n roll lore have been played out hundreds of miles away, our Northern cousins have had only monged-out trash like The Coral to claim as their own.
But music has proved many times that out of a lull, comes resurgence. At the forefront of this fightback has been the North-East’s growing art-rock scene. Tonight, its trailblazers The Futureheads invade the capital to show us Southern fairies that the North has woken up, and it wants it’s fucking duvet back. As they stagger through album opener ‘Le Garage’ an anxious mix of guitars, voices and spastic rhythms bounce off of the walls of the ULU. Lead singer Barry spits and stutters his way through 3 minute blasts of perfect, no-frills guitar-pop; like a rabid mackem jack russell, wound-up by the stray-cat howls of guitarist Ross and bassist Jaff. Modern classics ‘A to B’ and ‘Decent Days and Nights’ run maniacally off into the London night almost as soon as they announce their arrival; crashing through alleyways and smashing together dustbin lids in a bid to WAKE YOU UP. A cover of Kate Bush’s ‘Hounds of Love’ is the best example of the soul that The Futureheads add to their distinctly robotic aural onslaught, and the encore, (‘Carnival Kids’ and ‘Piece of Crap_’), is a further reminder that behind the machine-like precision, (owing much to Barry's kid brother, drummer Dave), of their rhythm section, lies a frantically beating heart.
Earlier, Maximo Park* had suitably agitated the crowd; frontman Paul* all paedophile-chic as he recited forlorn lyrics from a forlorn book with all the insolent grace of a broken businessman barking for yet another double-scotch. The kids down in front lapped up his lonesome lullabies; with singles past ‘The Coast is Always Changing’ and future ‘Apply Some Pressure’ standing out as highlights from The Futureheads North-Eastern neighbour’s. The band parade a similar affection of convulsing rhythm as tonight’s headliners, and their singer affably accepts the warm applause which brings their promising set to a close.
The Futureheads then, to recap: Robots with soul. Much like Barry White wired up to a pacemaker. Except obviously not. Because he’s dead.
Photo by Sonia Melot
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