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  Academy 2  
  Liverpool, UK  
Reviewed by:
  Indoor Miner  
Performance Rating:
Sound Quality:
Overall Rating:

I missed the first opener, The Boxcar Rebellion, but I did manage to see Dogs, who sounded like Kasabian trying to be The Strokes. Apart from having one of the worst name bands in recent memory, they also had a guitarist who resembled a young Jeff Beck and a singer who looked like my mate Ian trying to be Julian Casablancas. But though I’m not sure I'd like them on record, they were enjoyable enough on this night. Their highlight was a nicely revved up (and faithful) version of The Jam’s A Bomb In Wardour Street, which they played with far more vigour than Weller himself could muster nowadays. Add a spot of angular guitar, and it all added up to a tasty cover. All in all though, as hard as they worked, I found them to be more Slaughter & The Dogs than Sex Pistols, if you get my meaning…

But as for The Raveonettes…well, gigs don't come much better than this. Opening with Somewhere In Texas, a gorgeous slowie from their forthcoming Pretty In Black album, The Raveonettes sounded great. And in the case of singer Sharin Foo, looked great, too. But enough of all that, young man, you were there to see the band...

And what a band. The lead guitarist wriggled about as if his life (or his mighty fine sideburns!) depended on it, the bassist looked like he was auditioning for a remake of the zombie dance in Michael Jackson's Thriller video, whilst the drummer held it all together with some of the chunkiest sticks you could imagine. And there at the front were Foo and co-singer and lead Raveonette, Sune Rose Wagner, who appeared to be in the early stages of some strange, wispy take on Salvador Dali's facial hair.

As for the music, well, just imagine some weird hybrid of The Mama's and Papa's and My Bloody Valentine, or Hank Marvin playing New Rose, or Surfin' Safari with Mo Tucker on drums, or...I could go on, but I'll just say they're the like The Jesus & Mary Chain but with better tunes. And I loved the J&MC!! So, on paper, not the most original act you'll ever see, but The Raveonettes have taken all these many influences and made them their own.

The set was beautifully paced, constantly veering from the new stuff to old favourites from their Whip It On and Chain Gang Of Love albums. The Raveonettes obviously have great confidence in their new material. Not only was it heavily featured, but they felt they could play a song as perfect as That Great Love Sound (and it is pop perfection as far as I’m concerned) barely a third of the way through the gig.

And that confidence isn’t misplaced. This certainly wasn't one of those gigs where you're just wishing the band would play all your favourites, because the new songs were so good. Here Comes Mary and their take on the early 60s' standard My Boyfriend's Back are both great tunes. However, other tracks moved away from their noisy take on early 60's boy/girl songs and made you think they've been listening to some Surf and Nuggets compilations too, and, as is their way, they ensured they were all beautifully caked in a wall of noise. Of the old stuff, Heartbreak Stroll, Chain Gang of Love, and Little Animal were particular highlights, whilst the closer Beat City was probably bathed in even more swirling effects than the rest.

So if, like me, you like lots of noise and energy, but deep down you're a bugger for a good tune, then The Raveonettes are the band to see. Forget all that Fame Academy crap, this is pop music as it should be. Noisy, thrashy, melodic.


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