White Lies burst onto the scene with their huge debut album ‘To Lose My Life...’ back in 2009. Had this album hit just five years earlier during the indie boom of the mid-2000’s then White Lies would probably be headlining arenas right now alongside the likes of The Killers, Kasabian, Kaiser Chiefs, Snow Patrol etc. The sad fact is it didn’t and tonight they play the Waterfront in Norwich having been downgraded from the city’s larger UEA venue.
This is a crying shame as White Lies are right up there musically with those other groups, but alas by the time they arrived the mindless masses were already being sold the next “in” thing. Other than their poor timing though the band have done very well for themselves with their fourth studio album ‘Friends’ being released last year. With this the band have been out on a lengthy tour and tonight’s show is their last in the UK before heading into Europe and the venue is full early ready give them a big send off.
Opening proceedings this evening are fellow Londoners Anteros, who instantly engage the audience with their guitar pop. The four-piece fronted by Laura Hayden deliver an action packed half hour of entertainment as Hayden bounces around the stage. Full of energy and quality songs this is a band that could go far...even if they didn’t arrive in 2004!
With the crowd pumped up and ready for our headliners, White Lies take to the stage dressed all in black. Dark clothes to match the dark, moody music that follows with ‘Take It Out On Me’ and ‘There Goes Our Love Again’ starting their set. These are followed by the anthemic ‘To Lose My Life’ from the debut of the same name which gets the crowd bouncing along.
Years of touring combined with a stable line-up has turned White Lies into a formidable live act and this is clear to see as they plough through a mix of old and new songs this evening. ‘Hold Back Your Love’, ‘Getting Even’ and ‘The Price Of Love’ follow before the brilliant ‘Farewell To The Fairground’ steps things up a couple of gears.
White Lies come from a time when bands knew how to give value for money and it’s refreshing to see a headline act play for over an hour and a half at a time when many bands barely fill an hour. Tonight the audience are treated to ‘Morning In LA’, ‘Is My Love Enough’, ‘Unfinished Business’ and ‘From The Stars’ as the band ploughs relentlessly through their back catalogue.
‘A Place To Hide’, ‘Swing’ and ‘Don’t Want To Feel It All’ bring us towards the end of what has been a positively powerful performance. To bring the set to an end we have the monster of a song in the shape of ‘Death’ which has the venue rocking and the crowd begging for more. Of course they get more as the band return for an encore of ‘Big TV’, ‘Come On’ and ‘Bigger Than Us’ to send the crowd home happy. It truly is a shame that White Lies aren’t a bigger band than they are, but as long as they keep touring their fans will keep coming as they are a great live band.