(Magic Stick, Detroit, MI - June 11th, 2010)
The Far North East of England is not exactly a hot bed for musical acts, but over the last 5-10 years it has produced some notable contradictions to that theory with The Futureheads being at the forefront.
Their self-titled debut album release in 2004 came out to worldwide critical acclaim and rightly so! It's definitely up there as one of my personal favorite releases in the last 15 years.
Four years and three albums (2006's "This is Not the World", 2005's "News and Tributes", 2010's "The Chaos") later they are back in Detroit. The crowd tonight at the Magic Stick was small, but highly enthusiastic, definitely a group of hard-core Futureheads fans here tonight kids.
The lads opened up in blistering fashion with the title track from their latest release, The Chaos. As the opening line says "5, 4, 3, 2, 1, Let's Go!!" we were off and running!!! Unfazed by the small turnout they proceeded to give the crowd an amazingling high energy show. Buzzsaw guitars and catchy harmonies were the order of the day. Rhythm guitarist and vocalist (all members sing) Ross Millard bashes away on his Fender like his life depends on it!
These guys really love what they do with jokes and banter with the audience coming thick and fast ("you've had a few ales haven't you luv?"). When the crowd was singing along to their brilliant version of Kate Bush's "Hounds of Love" you would have thought there were a thousand people in that room.
Highlights for me were the tracks off the first album such as "False Conversation", "Carnival Kids" and "Hounds Of Love", but tunes such as "Struck Dumb" and "Heartbeat Song" off their current release made me run home afterwards and throw their latest one on! It definitely gives you a new impression of these tunes hearing them live. Great stuff!
They finished up with the last track on their latest release, Jupiter, sounding a little like Queen there..well almost, before taking a short break. Even though the crowd was small they were bloody loud and were not leaving until they heard some more. It didn't take long before the lads were back on stage for another 2 tunes, "The Connector", and "Work is Never Done" before finishing the evening up with one of the best tracks off their first release "Man Ray".
This was one of the best shows I have seen in some time by one of the leading exponents of melodic, hook driven, harmony laden guitar bands to come out of England in the last dozen years. Next time they come to town, and we hope we won't have to wait another 4 years, make sure you check them out. You will NOT be disappointed. I will be singing these tunes out loud (badly, mind you) for many days to come!!!
Review & Photos by:
Robert "Jacko" Jackson
Looking to see The Futureheads in concert in your neck of the woods? Check out www.razorgator.com to see if they have any available.