Erasure – Live Review

Erasure, The Roundhouse, London – October 25th 2011

I first saw Erasure on The Innocents tour in 1988 at the Hammersmith Apollo. Back then, Andy Bell was a blur of glitter and glamour, belting out the group’s hits while camping it to the max. For a teenager from Southend, this was about the most intoxicating event I’d ever witnessed – and over 20 years on Vince and Andy still have the power to captivate, as witnessed at The Roundhouse on Tuesday. Sure, there might not be as many costume changes or hi-energy dancing, but Erasure’s core remains intact – smart pop songs shot through with Bell’s epic vocals and a whole heap of camp gadding about…

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Lovebox – Live Review

Lovebox, Victoria Park, London – July 17th 2011

This year’s Sunday at the East End’s Lovebox Festival was dubbed ‘Out & Out Fierce’ and sported a line-up so gay it practically shimmered, including the likes of Marc Almond, Boy George, Beth Ditto, Scissor Sisters and Robyn. Essential supplies of brolly and rain mac got, we pitched up at a mud-sloshed Victoria Park for the festivities, ready to be out and out fierce…

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Imelda May – Live Review

Imelda May, Somerset House, London – July 11th

With the Somerset House Summer Series now in full swing, on Monday night it was the turn of Irish songstress Imelda May to seduce the crowd with her bewitching brew of rockabilly, jazz and blues. She arrived on stage 20 minutes late and for some, it was 20 minutes too late, the woman beside me crumpling into a heap during May’s second song after one glass too many. The rest of us however stayed the course and were rewarded with a right romp of a gig…

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Eels – Live Review

Somerset House, London, July 7th 2011

Somerset House is a truly astounding venue, crackling with history and grandeur – and the same can be said for its Summer Series, which kicked off last night and is set to play host to greats like Blondie, newbies like Hurts and comeback kids like Beady Eye. Last night Jesca Hoop started proceedings as the clouds drew in, and Californian stalwarts Eels were the first headliners of the 2011 line-up, bringing with them American swagger and enough communal hair to make Wayne Rooney green with envy…

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Gomez – Live Review

Gomez, Roundhouse, London – June 21st 2011

Gomez are that rare commodity these days – a band who have lasted through a whole decade and are still cranking out decent records. Their meshing of indie pop, rock, blues, roots & a splash of synths has always kept us guessing and all were present and correct at Tuesday night’s end-of-tour gig at Camden’s Roundhouse. And even though the band don’t all live in the same continent anymore – two of the five are stateside – they still conjure a special magic on-stage that swirled around the Roundhouse in mesmeric fashion…

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Scala & Kolacny Brothers – Live Review

Union Chapel, Islington, London – June 7th 2011

Fifteen women dressed in black, a conductor, a pianist and a Gothic church. As gigs go, Scala & Kolacny Brothers at the Union Chapel was up there for odd, but also for memorable. The concept is this: an all-female Belgian led by brothers Stijn and Steven Kolacny gallop through a slew of covers as well as their own original material. Their sound is haunting and ethereal, with just the piano and their voices intermingling but the result is truly unique…

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David’s Lyre Live Review

David’s Lyre, The Lexington, London – May 23rd 2011

I’ve been wanting to go to The Lexington for ages – it’s only round the corner from where I live but it’s one of those venues that I sail by on the bus and think, “Maybe this week…” So when I got an invitation to see David’s Lyre there on Monday, I knew my date with destiny had arrived. And the band? I expected them to be avant-garde with spiky twists in music and vocals – and they didn’t disappoint…

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Camden Crawl – Live Review

Camden Crawl, London, April 30th-May 1st

An uber-windy Camden Town ignited the 2011 festival season this weekend, with acts old and new being thrown into the Crawl tombola and spat out around 50 venues across Camden and Kentish Town. Hot tips, stalwarts, comedy and crowds all mingled to create a buzzing 48 hours in North London where we witnessed rappers, rockers, fiddles and joie de vive as the Gaymers-addled masses soaked up a weekend of new music while still bathing in a lake of post-royal-wedding euphoria…
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Rumer – Live Review

Rumer, Royal Festival Hall, London – March 28th 2011

Monday nights are normally bereft of entertainment, but this week’s Monday bucked the trend with tickets to see last year’s breakthrough act du jour Rumer at the Royal Festival Hall. Outside, The Thames sparkled in anticipation; inside, wine glasses were refilled and we took our seats for Rumer and that voice. Let the seduction commence…

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Matt & Kim – Live Review

Matt & Kim – Relentless Garage, Islington, London – March 23rd 2011

Matt & Kim are from Brooklyn and they like to swear. Throughout their gig last night, motherfuckers abounded, as did drum-jumping, crowd-surfing, beer-chucking and sweat – buckets of sweat. By the end of their hour-long set, the two main protagonists along with the crowd were sung out and wrung out. We also all knew that we’d just been involved in a magical night of music. In short, last night Matt & Kim rocked London…

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