London, Heaven, 1st February
[i]An electrifying line-up gets the Shockwaves NME Awards Shows off to an eclectic start[/i]
Here at NME Towers we don’t like to blow our own trumpet much, but occasionally it’s good to give a little parp to check the old boy’s still working. Take a stroll through this year’s Awards Shows then and you’ll find, from dreampop to shoegaze to ’50s revivalism, probably the most eclectic representation of today’s current array of artists around. Toot toot.
It seems fitting then that at the inaugural gig tonight we’re treated to the biggest mash-up of them all. In the words of the infamous viral: electro-pop meets southern hip-hop, anyone? Well, the south that [a]Giggs[/a] (above) is from may be south London, but his bass-driven, sample-ridden raps are certainly enough to separate him from your standard indie support band fodder. First up, though, is the reborn [a]CocknBullKid[/a], resplendent in a golden and flower-bedecked headdress full of twinkling bulbs.
Tracks like new single [b]‘Hang On To Your Misery’[/b] certainly show a neurotic pop star in full bloom. Following her, [a]Giggs[/a] makes for a rivetingly direct proposition. There are no gimmicks, no hangers-on or elaborate stage antics – he lets the likes of filthy grind-fest [b]‘Look What The Cat Dragged In’[/b] and BoB collaboration [b]‘Don’t Go There’[/b] speak for themselves. And, while the rapper may be a man of few baritone words, it’s clear from the rows of hands attempting some kind of embarrassing cardigan-clad gangsta lean that his minimalism can still attain maximum impact.
When the bemused crowd are questioned as to, “Who really, really likes sex tonight?”, the reaction is rather, er, tentative, but you’ve got to cut the guy some slack; let’s face it, the crowd are probably not exactly UK hip-hop connoisseurs.
[a]Metronomy[/a], however, are far past the stage of hyped-up new hopefuls. After a period out of the spotlight, Joe Mount and co return with a slew of new material that unveils a subtler, more coy slant on their synth-bothering disco slayers of old, and makes for a more exciting proposition than ever. [b]‘The Look’[/b] – an instant favourite – is a louche, French-sounding gem,[b]‘Some Written’[/b] scatters a mash of playful synth lines, and oldies [b]‘Thing For Me’[/b] and [b]‘You Could Easily Have Me’[/b] are more infectious and exuberant than we could hope for.
This year the quartet are ready to reclaim your [b]‘Nights Out’[/b] and your nights in all over again.