Snow PatrolEdit this event
- Astoria, London »
It’s like a Protestant stepping into a Catholic service; sure, you can be there if you want, I mean, they’re not going to turn you away; hell, they’re all good people inside, it’s just that you’re not going to fit in. Amongst the converted, the devotionals, you can only be a non-believer.
But before mass, there’s the warm-up of Ireland-via-Scotland’s Snow Patrol. Having released their previous albums on the Jeepster imprint, the six-piece have stepped up to the big time and released their latest effort on Polydor . Great things are clearly expected. And why not? With enough rawk in their armoury to please the reconstructed-yet-unconverted hardcore kids, Guitarist and vocalist Gary Lightbody and co. win over the crowd easily enough, whilst showing enough guile and goddamn proper tunes like, to possibly hold their attention over repeated listens of the album they no doubt want the emo-loving onlookers to buy. The set is short and not lacking a good wedge of oomph, and while they may pack a bit more indie than the tattooed crew would generally care for, theirs is a bright future. Snow Patrol may just well have landed.
Chris Carrabba let a crater of raw, bloodied human emotions impact upon the western world some time ago, and for Dashboard Confessional, the task is now to consolidate; spreading the gospel further, whilst throwing fresh new tales to already-believers eager to gorge upon them like lions thrown Christians in a Roman coliseum. And to be honest, it’s a fairly amazing scene. The packed-to-the-rafters Astoria is bellowing back each word to the heavily-inscribed frontman with a venom and belief I haven’t seen before. I’ve never seen anything like this. Sure, 100,000 people singing ‘Wonderwall_’ at Knebworth is a mighty acclaim of popular songwriting, but meaningless words thrown into the sky is not akin to this massive emotional bloodletting as people from ages 7-40 (the seven year-old was a particularly unnerving sight) sing these words as if they were a bespoke poem for their lives and troubles. Surely not everyone’s been crushed and burned as badly as CC? But maybe that’s the power of the Dashboard; as Michael Stipe said recently just before playing ‘Losing My Religion’, “this is your song, we just cover it”. Wanky perhaps, but undoubtedly true. The thoughts and feelings of this man have become public property; these are your emotions; he just articulates them.
So, it’s all aboard for the music-therapy express on a one-way trip to musical superstardom right? Not quite. Like I said before, unless you’re in the club, a member of Dashboard Waco, the most extraordinary aspect of the night are the fans; without them, he’s a busker without a muse. Perhaps conscious of his need to develop and grow, Carrabba has added more muscle to his third album ‘A Mark, a Mission, a Brand, a Scar’, quite an antithesis to his last release, a stripped and raw MTV unplugged show. All well and good, but the songs suffered in front of the crowd. Maybe it’s new album syndrome, but reaction to new songs complete with full band are far more muted, disappointed even, than when he intermittently stands alone with the crowd, armed only with his guitar and a gut of bile. The problem is that new Chris sounds a little bit Dave Matthews, and while that might go down well across the pond, it’s unlikely to pull in too many punters over here.
Still, these might be worries easily ironed out over the passing of time as his new songs settle snugly with the other ones, but frankly, I expected mildy-to-extremely obsessive fans in the mould of Dashboard’s to have the album down pat. Months before it was on the shelves of HMV.
Regardless, it’s an impressive, if easy night’s work for the Florida native. One wonders how well he fared in the midday heat of the V Festival’s second stages the following weekend.
Actually, he probably had a 5 strong row of kohl-eyed youths roaring back at him. As he always does.
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