Wednesday, March 21, 2007

The Sounds / Under the Influence of Giants / Low vs Diamond Birmingham Bar Academy Tuesday 20th March 2007 you doin? Sorry, just felt a bit US like after a night with some of Uncle Sam's finest pop tarts (yes, all these bands are from stateside...sort of...The Sounds are a bit Swedish...well they're totally Swedish...but they're big in the States...god I've started waffling already).

Starters came courtesy of Low vs Diamond who are managed by the bloke who manages The Killers fact fans. Oh yes. Despite the opinion of the young lady behind me who advised everyone in the crowd that 'all the warm up bands are shite...I've heard them on My Space...they're wank' I rather enjoyed L vs D. They reminded me a bit of a band called Furniture who had a hit a squillion years ago (the 80's actually) called Brilliant Mind. There's certainly a hint of the Killers in there too (their more mellower songs), strayed a little into 'Coldplayland' in places but I won't hold that against them 'cos they seemed like lovely people.

Equally lovely, but a little strange, were Under the Influence of Giants. Again strong shades of the 80's, a little Scissor Sisters (falsetto vocals ahoy) crossed with Daryl Hall & John Oates (I'm sure I read somewhere that one of them is related to either Hall or Oates...but then I'm on medication and it could just be a figment of fevered imagination) and any number of 80's soft rock bands. Sounds odd but it actually worked pretty well. The bass player had the best 'tache in rock too - and he wore huge Miami Vice style shades throughout the show, which is good enough for me.

For the main course we were served a large helping of The Sounds, a band who are currently attracting a hefty slab of positive P to the R to the E to the S to the S. Now, on record (or whatever format floats yer boat) The Sounds do come across a little Europop in places. Not a problem for a camp old sod like me but it might put off people who aren't in touch with their inner Steps (god this is ruining my reputation as a hard man of rock isn't it?). However, live they're a mass of sweaty oestrogen soaked Scando-rumpo-punk. Ms Sounds (Maja to her mates) began the set by rubbing her chest in the face of some poor bemused soul at the front (he didn't look too upset by the experience though...). There was lots and lots of provocative microphone work (note to Anne Summers - microphone vibrators...they could be that sounds wrong...well I spose they could come in all sizes...shit that sounds even worse...quick get back to the review, no one's reading this anyway...oh bugger). Ahem. Anyway, musically imagine Blondie, The Cardigans and Kim Wilde mashed up in a blender then drunk by Joey Ramone and spat out in gobs of musical sputem. And if you can imagine that you're sicker than I am.

Are they going to be big? The man from The Hearing Aid he say yesss. Maja is chuffin' brilliant, the band is as polished as you'd expect after wowing the States for a few years and Tony The Beat is a dirty pop whore of a track. And we all love a dirty pop whore...

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