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Live: The Drums @ HMV Ritz

The Drums
HMV Ritz
10th December
3 stars

Finding a position at a gig used to be simple, usually involving getting as close to the front as possible, mistaking cramped dance moves for some form of sexual initiation rite, before finally getting covered in what you hoped was just a pint of warm lager. It is a credit therefore to The Drums appeal (even if it does leave me having a post-teen crisis) that I find it difficult to decide where to stand, the front stalls packed with teenage girls and the rear taken up by an older crowd, all of whom seem to be sporting Smiths shirts (“original, not a copy” as one such wearer explains to me).

The Drums come on to a rapturous welcome and as they burst into ‘What You Were’, it’s instantly apparent why they appeal across the age ranges. Catchy melodies and up-tempo beats get the crowd moving, with vocalist Jonathan Pierce keeping the crowd enraptured by his easy yet odd manner. Drawling on dark subjects in between songs, Pierce lets slip a wry smile, a more relaxed side to the band’s usually uptight front shining through with this being the last date of a lengthy tour.

New tracks such as ‘Money’ stand up with old favourites ‘Best Friend’ and ‘I Need Fun In My Life’, yet many tracks sound rushed and dangerously similar. The set ends abruptly as, after a brief gap and a resulting encore, the band finish with ‘Searching for Heaven’, a bleak Thom Yorke style yowl, during which most people dash to the bar in preparation for the anticipated ‘Let’s go Surfing’ ending that sadly never arrives. A sense of disappointment lingers on leaving, yet what The Drums have achieved so far is impressive. One can only hope that time can now be set aside to fulfil their potential.

To see our review of The Drums’ most recent album, Portabello, click here

The Drums – Me and the Moon (live)

Tags: HMV Ritz, Live, Portamento, The Drums, The Smiths

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