Last night I paid a visit to one of my favourite venues in Amsterdam, a converted former church going by the name of Paradiso to watch….well…..Chvrches. Joined by my very good friend and gig buddy Neus, we assumed our usual spot, front left practically on the stage with a huge speaker on top of us. On this occasion our proximity to the speaker and Neus’ keenness to be right in the action caused her a just a slight problem, they were SO loud!
I loved the Chvrches album the minute I heard it but going to see a band live for the first time can be a risk. Will they perform well? will it sound good? will they come across well? The Scottish three-piece answered these questions with an unequivocal YES!! Seeing their electro-pop tracks come to life before your eyes was quite something to behold. The stunning voice of Lauren Mayberry cutting through the rafters and captivating the entire room with ease. This accompanied by talented musicians Iain Cook and Martin Doherty switching one minute from Guitar, next to keyboard, then to a sample pad meant we were in for a musical treat. Doherty provided backing vocals and took center stage for a track two, his energetic bounding about the stage getting the crowd moving even more.
Some bands tend not to have too much interaction with the crowd aside from introducing the songs and perhaps the odd “thank you”. Kings of Leon being one of these bands and funnily enough during one of the many funny interactions with the crowd Lauren took a swipe at KOL for now sounding like U2. Bit of a mixed reaction from the crowd on this but that may have something to do with the international crowd not understanding her through the Scottish accent.
Chvches will be fully in the festival circuit this year and still have Zurich, Munich and Berlin to come in their European tour. If you get a chance, I urge you to go and experience them live! It’s impossible to choose a particular track as a highlight from this gig when from start to finish we were taken to Chvrch!
Here you have it, the first installment of Tune-Thousand And Fourteen. The regular profile of exciting artists you’ll be hearing big things from this year. So without further ado;
This Jamaican born, Stratford raised 19 year old apparently began experimenting with music at the teeny tiny age of 7. Some of her earliest tracks were so deep and heart-wrenching it was almost impossible to believe they had been composed by a girl who at the time was just 12 years old. Mini Moore took inspiration from things she heard and things she saw. Whether she fully understood the content of these early tracks I’m unsure but a self-confessed obsession with Lauryn Hill had clearly made an impact. When she later moved to the guitar and a folkier element appeared her sound began to take shape. I first heard a track called Flaws and instantly wanted to hear more of Moore because one things for sure, her voice is anything but flawed. The title track from her debut EP “The Lake” shows a beautifully delicate vocal performance, at times sounding close to tears.
Donald Glover aka Childish Gambino is a man of many talents. Starting his career in comedy and appearing in numerous roles on the big and small screen he’s now focusing on the area we really care about here, MUSIC. His second studio album “Because The Internet” was released on December 10th and has since received rave reviews. The album title came while working with none other than Beck, who asked “Do rappers talk to each other?”. Mr Glover responded “I don’t like starting answer’s with this, but because the internet….”. Beck suggested that be the name of the album and it stuck! When everything we do leaves a digital in-print somewhere online it’s pretty accurate, because the internet is everything. Childish Gambino’s lyrical content is unlike your everyday rapper, there’s a welcome lack of bitches, money and bling which can surely be contributed to his work as a writer. This as well as killer beats and catchy hooks makes “Because The Internet” a must listen. He’ll be performing here in Amsterdam at Melkweg on February 12th.
RY X is an Australian singer songwriter who currently resides in LALA Land began his career back in 2010 under his real name (Ry Cuming) with a self titled album. I discovered RY X thanks to the brilliant Shazam app after hearing a snippet of Berlin on a TV advert for a Sony Bravia television of all things. Now with label mates such as Alt-J and Local Natives, he’s in good company and following the release of the “Berlin EP” is sure to go onto be known for much more than “that song on that tv ad”. The striped back nature of Berlin makes it a beautifully captivating yet stunningly simple track. Vampires has since followed and is equally brilliant. RY X will be playing at Paradijskerk in Rotterdam on February 22nd.
Public Access T.V.
New York three piece Public Access T.V. are the talk of the town although little is known about the indie-punk sounding outfit. With minimal online presence consisting of just one track on Soundcloud, a sparse facebook page, little followed Twitter account and NOTHING on Youtube information is hard to come by. Having played their first publicized gig in New York as recently as January 30th they’ve had their first play on Radio One and interviewers are circling like sharks. In an age where everyone is after their 15 minutes and self publicity is easier than ever because the internet (see what I did there) does this make them brilliant or simply plain arrogant? I’m going with the former. Who knows how, when or where we’ll be hearing more from them but there is certainly no IF about it. Public Access T.V. are ones to keep your ear to the ground for.