Whist the Evening Standard wasn’t so impressed, the Metro seemed to love it..
Metro: Doves are a delight at BBC Electric Proms
Last night saw Doves become the latest to give their back catalogue a new lick of sonic paint – with the vocal assistance of the fantastic London Bulgarian Choir.
Not that Doves need much help to make a venue-filling noise; they’ve quietly become past masters at building anthemic walls of sound.
This gig was certainly not lacking in moments of arms-in-the-air rapture – in fact, as it reached its climax, it could have been mistaken for either an Evangelist rally or an underarm deodorant commercial, as the Roundhouse (London’s finest venue by a country mile) turned into a sea of hands reaching for the heavens.
If anything, the London Bulgarian Choir were, perhaps, a little underused – not featuring on many songs, and providing little more than (albeit awesome) backing vocals on some others.
But when they were given a starring role and fully integrated into the songs, the effect was spectacular – never more so than on profoundly epic version of The Cedar Room, the band’s second ever single, sounding no less majestic almost a decade on.
Whilst I wasn’t there, I have watched the BBC footage. I reckon the Metro review is spot on. As always with these one off shows, there will be moments that work, and some that don’t. Never been a big fan of Catch the Sun, but it sounded great last night.
Highlights for me was the stunning Birds Flew Backwards, Greatest Denier & Kingdom Of Rust. The Cedar Room probably has never sounded so good. Jez’s guitar never sounded good to my ears. The choir singing those high backing vocals was majestic.
Despite the duff ending, I also thought The Storm sounded great. A great night all round by all accounts. Again I wasn’t there, so I can’t really say. But watching the footage, it certainly looks like one of the best shows they’ve ever played. Would look great on DVD..
by admin · Published August 1, 2009
· Last modified November 12, 2010
For more pictures of doves second night at the Sydney Metro, visit the fastlouder gallery here.
To show we are not completely biased, here is a not so glowing review of the second Sydney show.
I was a bit letdown that the band didn’t delve into any of Kingdom Of Rust’s second half. Spellbound and Compulsion in particular would have been welcome, especially considering some of the other new songs didn’t quite hit the highs they do on the record (I’m looking at you, The Outsiders). Having said that, Kingdom of Rust was absolutely fantastic. Delivered with passion by the band, it was greeted by the crowd as if it was an old classic.
The main set ended with one of my favourite Doves tracks (still after all these years), The Cedar Room. The band then left the stage before returning for a pretty spectacular encore. They started with Lost Souls‘ moody instrumental Firesuite (!!!) before Andy stepped out from behind the drums to deliver Here It Comes. The show then ended with a couple songs from The Last Broadcast culminating in another anthemic, percussive performance of There Goes The Fear. How can you not love that song?
Was it a spectacular gig? Nope. But it was certainly enjoyable. Which, come to think about it, is pretty much what I think about Doves.
To read the full review and see the reviewer’s pictures, click here.
Sydney Metro Second Night setlist
Almost Forgot Myself
The Greatest Denier
Kingdom Of Rust
Black And White Town
The Cedar Room
Here It Comes
There Goes The Fear
by admin · Published August 1, 2009
· Last modified November 12, 2010
A fairly positive review from the Sydney Morning Herald of the first Sydney show.
The undisputed star of the show, however, is Jimi Goodwin. He spends most of his time on bass and lead vocals but before the end makes effective cameos on drums and a nylon-stringed classical guitar. Notably, he knows his way around a good groove –a remnant of Doves’ past as dance-pop one-hit wonders Sub Sub –giving yet another appealing dimension to the music.
It’s a predictably structured set, with the newer material generally at the front. While there is much to admire in the band’s continued growth, these songs are not without some stodginess.
As if to show them up, late appearances from classic oldies The Cedar Room, with its mid-tempo grind, the slinky Here It Comes and There Goes the Fear, which evolves from a shimmering guitar opening to a final percussion free-for-all, combine to provide a thrilling climax.
While the consistent Some Cities cruised along comfortably, Kingdom of Rust is a bumpier ride, as we hear Doves playing to their strengths one minute, and giving in to their schmaltzy instincts the next. However, for a good half hour we’re hearing what sounds like a rejuvenated band, the three musicians up to their old eclectic mischief, sounding as ambitious as ever. “Jetstream” is inspired, the band’s dance element returning with a vengeance, thrumming synths, pounding kick drum, and flange-enhanced hi-hat beats backing Jez’s coy, detached vocals, and the furious “The Outsiders” rocks harder than the threesome ever has before, the song’s churning, swaggering hard rock at times evoking Swervedriver’s “Last Train to Satansville”. With its wistful mellotron loops, ambient touches, and the simple phrasing by smooth-voiced Goodwin, “Winter Hill” captures a pastoral feeling far better than the last album, while the shifts from rich layers of trilling melodies to the abrupt, tense bassline of the chorus on “The Greatest Denier” is an inspired touch.
Doves must be getting sick of the comparison by now but it’s hard not to wonder if the recent success enjoyed by Elbow could also happen to them.
After all, they’re both scruffy but charming gangs from the North-west who write impassioned, anthemic songs deeply connected to the region and who have been plodding along reliably in the background throughout the last decade.
So is Kingdom Of Rust their Seldom Seen Kid? In some ways, it could be.
What has always made Doves so appealing –the rhythmic undercurrents that betrayed their early days as dance act Sub Sub, the multi-textured songs which slowly reveal themselves –is confidently displayed here on songs such as the searing opener Jetstream or the dizzying Winter Hill.
There are also successful moves outside the band’s comfort zone, such as the throbbing, motorik rhythm that powers The Outsiders or the title track, a shuffling, achingly sad song which paints Lancashire as the dusty setting for a spaghetti western.
However, Kingdom Of Rust doesn’t maintain this early quality, flagging in the centre and exposing the craggier edges of singer Jimi Goodwin’s vocals.
With a cluster of formulaic tracks forming the album’s core, only the surprisingly funky Compulsion and the more forceful House Of Mirrors lift the record again towards its close.
A complex, multi-faceted record, Kingdom Of Rust will certainly appeal to Doves’ existing fans but it lacks the sheer force of personality needed to make everyone else sit up and take note again.
Doves’ epic indie rock mightn’t fall under what we class as “urban” and “industrial” music, but there’s arguably no-one more suited to that description. Their sound conjures up huge rain-lashed cooling towers, crumbling apartment blocks huddled under cumulonimbus-clogged skies, weed-cracked concrete and traffic-clogged sliproads. In these imposing landscapes stand the glum-faced Doves, the beating human heart of these soulless spaces.
Highlights are the Morricone-flavoured title track with its unexpected, uplifting Mike Oldfield-esque melody, the atmospheric Jetstream with its driving Kraftwerkian beats and spacy electronic flourishes, the waking dream of 10:03, and the rousing Compulsion, which mixes a funky bassline with vast sweeps of atmospheric guitar to great effect.
As ever, there’s something highly satisfying and strangely comforting about their sullen pomp, guaranteed to put some drama into a dreary drive over the M62.
‘Jetstream’ is de knaller die ‘Kingdom of rust’ opent. De groep beweert zelf dat het nummer gestoeld is op hun voorliefde voor Vangelis (!). Wij horen enkel de binnenrollende drums zoals wij dat enkel Larry Mullen jr hebben weten doen, in goede doen. De groep boet hier misschien wat in aan melodie, maar pompt zo de wilskracht naar het voorste plan. Ook verder in het album zijn het de drums en de baslijnen die voor de hoogste noot zorgen. Nummers als ‘The outsiders’ en ‘The great denier’ zorgen voor een dynamisch tempo.
Check out doves.net for the first part of an interview with Andy & Jez about the tour setlist. Interesting stuff. They will also talk about the controversial omission of The Cedar Room! I’m looking forward to reading that one.