Show Review & Photos: The Whip @ Chop Suey

The Whip comes from Manchester, England and far exceed their Mancunian pedigree. They’re a quartet of seductive talent and strength and I made it to their show even though I was recovering from a flu bug. I had to see them, I just had to and I was completely right about my suspicions that they’d put on a tasty as salt and vinegar chips show.

You may have heard what is their real breakthrough song, Trash. It’s got sexy synth & drums starting it out and a classic bass line. Then it’s got vocalist/guitarist Bruce Carter blends in with the only lyrics of the song I wanna be trash . . . and I have become the trigger for your gun. I love how they built this song and build it live. I love the rhythm of all their songs and I got this feeling of real affection among the band members – the way they interact is so connected and yet loose. Drummer Lil Fee is a major talent and it’s so great to watch playing her drums. The band has such a strong style and it hits you right in the gut, a visceral attack you enjoy.

I love Carter’s voice as well. He mentioned he was feeling ill that night but it didn’t hurt his voice – if it’s usually better live then that is an amazing feat for sure. The synth work Danny Saville brings to the band is literate and sparkling. Nathan Sudders’ bass is ideal. Trash though is not their only show-stopper – Save My Soul, Divebomb, and Blackout all rage with fire. Hell, all their songs are excellent.

Oh, and their debut CD, X Marks Destination is a must buy.

Bruce Carter

Lil Fee

Danny Saville

Nathan Sudders

Bruce Carter

Lil Fee
all photos by Dagmar – you can see more here & here.

Here’s their video for Trash:

Also on the way is the interview I did with Danny Saville and Nathan Sudders.

Photos: Britney Spears!

Josh Armstrong took some stunning shots of Britney Spears at her recent Tacoma show. I have long admired Josh’s work. He takes beautiful pix of a variety of subjects and his concert shots too capture fleeting glimpses of grace and beauty.

You can see more of his photos here and you can contact him at [email protected].

I remember the first time I saw Britney Spears’ video for . . . Baby One More Time and I thought she was sassy and adorable. She’s still sassy and at times adorable though calling a grown woman adorable is kind of silly. I wish people would be nicer to and about her. She has beautiful sons any mother would envy and I think she’s working out her life in her own time and her own way.

Now for the lovely pix:

Looking good Britney!

Photos: The Presets @ Neumos

I’ve heard people say no one dances at shows in Seattle. This is just not true, especially if you’re at a Presets concert. There were masses of people pushed together and dancing with little or no inhibition. The Presets are such a mighty band and have grown even stronger since I saw them last year with Cut Copy. They’re something to relish indeed.

Favorites of mine from the whopper of a set: I Go Hard, I Go Home, Are You the One?, Yippiyo-Ay, My People and This Boy’s in Love.

I took photos of the show and am including a few here. For more visit the following links: presets @ neumos 1, presets @ neumos 2.

Kim Moyes & Julian Hamilton of the Presets

Julian Hamilton of the Presets

Kim Moyes of the Presets

Kim Moyes of the Presets

Julian Hamilton of the Presets

Julian Hamilton of the Presets

Kim Moyes of the Presets

Kim Moyes & Julian Hamilton of the Presets
All photos by Dagmar.

Show Review & Photos: White Lies @ Neumos

“We’re White Lies, and this is Death,” that’s how singer/guitarist Harry McVeigh ended White Lies’ set last Tuesday at Neumos in Seattle. The stage was stark, black and white with bits of fog drifting in and out and I felt like this was a bit like what Ingmar Bergman would have done with a rock and roll stage set. There’s that moment in the Seventh Seal where Max von Sydow’s character encounters Death in the flesh – that’s what it reminded me of and I mean that as a high compliment. To end a show with the pounding and relentless horror of Death’s That’s why everything’s got to be love or death/Yes this fear’s got a hold of me is a significant farewell.

Harry McVeigh and Jack Brown – photo by Dagmar

It may seem strange to talk about how a show ended before I talk about how it began but keep in mind this is a band concerned with emotional catastrophe and pain. Angst. And I love every part of it. White Lies, comprised of McVeigh, Jack Brown (drums), and Charles Cave (bass/backup vocals), released their self-titled debut this year and it’s my favorite of the year. The band came out roaring with the contemplative and danceable Farewell to the Fairground and To Lose My Life. To Lose My Life, already a major hit in the UK is a Chameleons-esque beauty with an unfairly infectious lyric of Let’s grow old together/ and die at the same time. There is not a weak song in their live set or their CD – the alternating gentle and lusciously prominent bass, the strapping and elegant drumming, the rolling baritone, the swift guitar and provocative lyrics – it’s all here.

Charles Cave – photo by Dagmar

Jack Brown – photo by Dagmar

Unfinished Business was a highlight for me, it’s probably my favorite White Lies song. Its pace is so appealing and the lyrics so dramatic: You’ve got blood on your hands and I know it’s mine. I would type more but it would be the entire song. Just listen to it. Plus it’s got what I think must be a nod to Duran Duran’s A View to a Kill: A sight for sore eyes and with a view to kill. EST was also really amazing: I hope you remember me/ I hope you never pretend for me.

Each band member has a unique and intense presence that attracted my attention the entire show. You just need to see this band, trust me. Added bonus: these are all handsome guys. The live performance is different from the CD and that’s another bonus for me – White Lies is all that is glorious about music.

Harry McVeigh – photo by Dagmar

Check out more photos of the show in my gallery: Page 1 and Page 2.