The Maccabees

O2 Academy, Newcastle upon Tyne on Wed 7th Oct 2009

If you've followed the progress of South London 5-piece The Maccabees over the past 4 years, then, like me, you can definitely see a distinct change in the band.

The band, having based themselves in Brighton, went on to release their first single 'Latchmere' in early 2006, which saw the band's popularity rise across the country, but it has been over the past couple of years, which has seen the band's music used for all kinds of all advertisements, that has made the band as popular as they are.

Tonight's show is a sell-out, un-surprisingly, but unlike many of today's touring bands, I feel that The Maccabees' popularity is very much deserved.

Singles from the band's first album, 'Colour It In', such as 'First Love' and 'Toothpaste Kisses', definitely showed promise on first listen, and live, they were highlights of the set, but it's with the band's latest album, 'Wall of Arms', the I feel the band have found a new musical maturity.

Opening their set with the first single from their latest album, 'No Kind Words', the band wasted no time in showing what was in-store for the sell out audience, with punching guitars, and the fantastic, gritty and soothing vocals of Orlando Weeks, the crowd was soon dancing away, and they knew they had plenty more to come.

One of the things that I like most about The Maccabees, is that they write 'pop' songs, in the sense that the chorus is always catchy and they never last more than 3 or 4 minutes, meaning the band were able to cram the majority of their material into their 90 minute set.

There were many highlights within the set, none more so that two of the band's newest tracks, 'Love You Better' and 'Can You Give It'.

In a set which contained songs that they had been playing live for several years, these two tracks really stood out for me; still sounding fresh and showing that maturity that I mentioned earlier.

On stage, the chemistry between the band is clearly there, especially between lead singer Orlando, who tonight wore a shirt very similar to 1980s era Morrissey, and lead guitarist Felix White. They continually looked to each other for direction, and as clichéd as it sounds, 'feed off each other', and this translated back to the audience, resulting in a fantastic live show.

Leaving the stage, and returning for their encore to rapturous applause, the band had done their job well, and after seeing the band several times over the years I wasn't left disappointed.

For me, they still sound as fresh and new as they did all those years ago, and they're clearly enjoying themselves now more than ever. They're a young band, with great ideas, I'll definitely be returning to see them live at the next opportunity to see if they continue in this manner.

article by: Anthony Hetherington

published: 12/10/2009 11:07


sorry, we currently have no gigs listed for this act.