We are suckers for a good pop song, especially of the British variety. I don’t think there is a band doing better work in a live setting than Two Door Cinema Club. They have been touring pretty much non-stop for the last year hitting ACL last year early in the record release cycle, now back at the end of the finishing out the festival junket.
I figured I might as well take an opportunity to get some photos, shimmy and channel my inner tween. They brought Circa Waves along. They are from Liverpyyoool.
Click through, I kinda dig these photos. I was playing with shutter speeds in stroby lights. Plus, this is the best sounding setting possible, thanks ACL Live.
Saturday may not have been the strongest lineup, but it was awfully photogenic.
Slaves was a pure musical highlight for me; British punk rock from two individuals that believe in the songs and enjoy what they do. More on that after the break. JR JR was the surprise set of the day, far more fun than I imagined it would be, shiny things. Saint Motel has left the ATH behind, now a solid fest headliner after we spring-boarded the band with a Stubb’s Inside booking, sarcasm. Andra Day is terribly talented, but not my jam. LL Cool J was the throwback performance we deserved. The Naked and Famous used black and white outfits and high energy from the crowd to fill a memory card. #jumpshot Blue Healer won the day for the locals, strong set getting the crowd to stop and listen. Two Door Cinema Club put down the best festival set, admitting the crowd, in spite of how favorably they responded to the new songs, wanted bangers. Finally, I finished with a little Connor Oberst before heading out.
Read on past the break and then look at the pretty pictures.
Guilty pleasures, we all have them (Timberlake, comics, shimmying, wrestling, jello shots). I have a thing for Brit-Pop and the poppiest stuff going in my playlists has to be Two Door Cinema Club. I swore them off after the last show based on their destined rise with a rabid fan base of teenage “drop me off at the show, mom” crowd. More on them in a bit.
Inevitably, openers will get also get more mainstream as the crowd changes. Robert DeLong is an interesting creature.
But, even if you hate the bands involved, I hope you will take a look at the photos. I shot the second night and the photo pit to myself. It was well lit and a ton of fun to shoot.
Releasing their debut album back in 2008, The Little Ones have henceforth been known for their hyper-energized, guitar laden power pop. With members of this group coming from the band, “Sunday’s Best,” this group is comprised of several musicians giving their best go at making music that people can shake it to.
If I could say one thing about The Dawn Sang Along, it would be that it essentially defines a ‘fun’ record. When the first inklings of synthesized beat begins, you can already feel the anticipation building quickly before the song takes off. Such is the beginning of the album in “Argonauts,” which opens things up with all of The Little Ones’ explosive and energetic bouncy pop. The borderline falsetto vocals work to keep things extra light and airy, while mechanic drum beats and synthesizers give this band a sound that resembles a mixture of bands like Two Door Cinema Club and Cut Copy. “Argonauts,” though the first track on the album, manages to maintain its resonating catchiness all through the rest of the album, driving to return to it time and time again.
But, as I mentioned before, The Dawn San Along is pretty much the embodiment of a fun record, and so The Little Ones have a lot more to offer than just one song of sunshine. Indeed, the follow the first track with the equally catchy “Boy on Wheels,” which possesses the same hooky guitars that this group exemplified on their previous record. Some other stronger tracks off the album include “Shake Your Sign,” which incorporates some less static sounding drums, opening up the dimensions of sound. Also, late on the album is “Ain’t It Like You & Me,” which closes out things nicely with its building and echo-y vitality.
Though this record is sunshine and fun expressed in a summery sound, it may just be a little too sugary and bright for anyone but teenage girls. To their credit, they do try and slow things down and sober up a bit on numbers like “AWOL,” but The Little Ones just can’t really shake off the sunshine. And to some, it may just be what is needed to shake off the winter blues, but for others, The Dawn Sang Along might come across like that person who is always smiling a bit too widely, too early in the morning.
This post is going to be huge with good reason. The artists were very photogenic on a gorgeous day. The lawn held together for the most part despite the rain and spirits were high going into day three with beautiful blue skies and a dry breeze.
Here is the rundown for Sunday pics: Stars, Gary Clark Jr., Polica, Two Door Cinema Club, Die Antwoord, Willis Earl Beal and Crystal Castles. I took plenty of Zef Side shots, have a quick cameo from Moon Duo and got sad because of the closed pit for Crystal Castles that was “in the rider” though none of us photogs knew that. Willis Earl Beal may have been the highlight of my ACL with a small crowd to start that quickly grew as people were pulled in by the emotion and vocal power. Wonderful stuff.
So Two Door is one of those bands that I can’t help but like. Call me a sucker for Brit Pop done by Irish kids (cue snarky comment from Nathan).
But what was nice to see was Bad Veins opening for them again. They are on the local label Modern Outsider who are friends of the program.
However, the middle support sucked. Think wedding DJ meets karaoke mash-up. Oh my, it was so bad and made worse when I found out the respectable Clap Your Hands Say Yeah would be in the two-slot for the rest of the tour.
Anyway, I love these pics. Enjoy.
A bit lost in the shuffle of SxSW was a show at La Zona Rosa on the Tuesday before the full on start of the Music Festival. The lineup featured an interesting combination of bands in town for the conference; Bad Veins, Royal Bangs and Two Door Cinema Club. Impressions of each and some pics after the jump, but I’ll let you know now that Two Door was awesome…
So last Thursday pretty much everyone in town was over at Stubb’s for the sold out Phoenix show right? Well we weren’t… but our awesome photo lady Jennifer Murtha was there! She spent the night enjoying some jams and taking some super fancy photos. Follow the jump for some pictures of Phoenix and Two Door Cinema Club at Stubbs.
Hopefully you were paying attention a few months ago when tickets went on sale for the Phoenix show at Stubbs since it’s now sold out. Don’t give up hope though… You can always try craigslist or scalping from shady fools outside the venue. Opening support will be provided by Two Door Cinema Club. Also stick around after Phoenix wraps up their show for a set on the inside stage by locals The Laughing.
Download: Phoenix – Lisztomania [MP3]