Sunday 30 November 2014

November Round-Up

Here we are again, with now only one more month left until we crash into 2015. There probably won't be one of these round-ups for December, still haven't quite worked out how I'm going to do end of year stuff yet. In the meantime, here's what happened in November.

Gigs of the Month

Vinnie Caruana, Great Cynics, Boston Manor at The Macbeth
There were a couple of show this month that could have easily made it as 'gig of the month' but Vinnie Caruana probably stole the show entirely pretty last minute. The former The Movielife and current I Am The Avalanche frontman has just finished three small acoustic dates in the UK (Southampton, London and Liverpool). After four great support acts alt-pub The Macbeth was almost full to the brim in anticipation for one of New York's finest. Having such a large back catalogue to choose a set list from (remember there's Caruana's own solo album as well) might have lost the crowd for some artists, but not this one. Some attendees only knew I Am The Avalanche, some were only interested in The Movielife songs but everybody was hooked for the entire hour. For me, highlights were no doubt a mid-set 'Green Eyes' from IATA's self-titled album as well as finale 'Brooklyn Dodgers' which pretty much brought the house down. A heart-warming night for all in that East London venue on Friday.

Rixton, Sheppard and Young Kato at Koko
Let me start with, this was a strange one. It was the first time I'd been to Koko for a gig that wasn't sold out, but when you consider that it's a Monday night and Rixton's stereotypical fanbase are somewhere around the age of 15 it all sort of makes sense. Unfortunately opening act tonight, Young Kato hadn't stepped up since I saw them a few weeks prior supporting Charlie Simpson, but they rattled through their short set before anybody had much time to dwell on them. This was the only date of Rixton's UK tour that Sheppard played so it's fairly clear that this show was just a little test to see how they went down, and honestly, they weren't bad at all. For a band that the majority of people in the room had never heard before, they did a surprisingly good job of maintaining the atmostphere and keeping everybody entertained. I first saw Rixton over the summer at Wireless I'd never been so pleasantly surprised by a live performance than I was with them - so tonight my expectations were high. For a band who have only really released two singles, their set were cleverly broken up with a couple of covers/medleys, however their best known tracks 'Wait On Me' and number one single 'Me And My Broken Heart' were the stand-outs.

Other noteable events:
Nightmare Festival
Klaxons at Shepherds Bush Empire (Their final UK show ever, and it was pretty special)
Jamie T and Slaves at Alexandra Palace

Album of the Month

PVRIS - White Noise
It will not come as a great surprise to anyone who has skimmed this blog before or knows me in real life that PVRIS' debut album 'White Noise' is album of the month for November. A band who have in some ways sprung out of nowhere to some released their first full length at the start of the month. If singles 'St Patrick' and 'My House' were anything to go by, 'White Noise' was not going to disappoint.   Whilst debut albums are rarely perfect, PVRIS have done a damn good job at trying. The balance between synth-rock anthems like 'Smoke' and 'Fire', and slower more emotional tracks like 'White Noise' gives a well rounded experience of what PVRIS are capable as a band. There's a long road ahead of this three-piece and they're only just getting started. (P.S. UK ASAP TOUR PLEASE!)

Other great releases from this month:
Nickelback - No fixed address (We probably shouldn't discuss this, but I thoroughly enjoyed it)
RL Grime - Void
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 OST

Top Five Tracks

Only a couple of random favourites this month:

TV Show: Ink Master

Bar: Fifty Five Bar

November playlists:
YouTube / Spotify / Deezer



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