NME Awards Tour, Brighton Dome

NME Awards Tour, Brighton Dome


 
NME Awards Tour, Brighton Dome
Always a reliable source of the next big things, this year’s NME tour presented us with a mixture, roaming from the alt indie of bright young things The Vaccines, dub step and trance from Magnetic Man, and the confidence of seasoned dance act, the fabulous Crystal Castles.
Manchester based band The Vaccines kick things off with songs from their debut album, ‘what did you expect from the Vaccines?’ The crowd are moving instantly as front man Justin wails out across the dome. With their typical indie four piece set up of a vocalist, bass, drums and guitar, the album title seems appropriate – expectations hang heavy on a style which can easily sound like a musical version of paint-by-numbers. Luckily this is not the case. They perform with an energy which transcends the barriers of an all too typical genre,  galvanising the crowd. By the end of their set not a single person is standing still. It seems The Vaccines are out to break the mould.
Everything Everything speed things up with fast claps and a disco falsetto which lilts from low to high with ease.  Frantic heavy drums get the kids in the crowd clapping along and build layers of sound, the music is going down well with an enthusiastic crowd- heads can be made out moving in time in the glow from the purple stage lights. Occasionally the band break down into a heavier sound, which suits them, drum breaks which sound more rage against the machine than indie pop.
Magnetic Man begins with an aggressively energetic frontman who keeps shouting ‘Brighton! Yo Brighton!’ over the top of a low throbbing bassline, a habit he repeats throughout the set.  Rather than connecting with his audience it serves to give the disconcerting feel that on such a peripatetic tour he is simply reminding himself where he is. Luckily the tunes make up for the less than subtle MC skills, they play a mixture of brilliant trance, slow drum and bass and past hits featuring female vocalist Katy B, finishing off with single ‘we are getting nowhere’ with John Legend.
Crystal Castles are introduced with the story of Alice Glass’s leg injury, and the fact that she was determined to complete the tour. Hobbling on with a crutch, the diminuitive singer looks even more fragile than usual, which only serves to emphasise the delightful disparity as she rocks out, wailing and screaming around like a wild bird released from a cage. Crystal Castles play a mixture of their looped industrial dance, old and new. The audience moves like a stormy sea of limbs, looking up at the infectious energy produced by the two musicians, it is easy to see why. A rare treat.
Lizzie Simner
What Did You Think Of The Gig?
Tom, 20: ‘It was awesome! I haven’t danced so much for ages. The Vaccines were wicked.’
Sam, 20: ‘I love Crystal Castles so much, I’ve seen them five times.’
Emma , 16: ‘It was the first one I’ve been to, awesome.’
Jess, 19: ‘Magnetic Man was hilarious, it was great, definitely worth it.’

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