White Lies @ London ICA

Londoners showcase their strengths
_original
What a cock fest!

Without question, I’ve seen less meat in a butchers shop, so bloody male the audience is at White Lies’ first sold-out London gig. Whether it’s the rise in bloke-y attention paid to The Guardian’s recommendations page or the A&R community storming in on this art-hole to bicker about the one that got away, this somewhat disorientating attendance of mature men doesn’t take anything away from the intensity of what is becoming one exceptional show.

Though some still tear at their sooty threads and spit “Bastard Interpol!” taunts, none can denote White Lies’ intension to emotionally move a listener, with enormous surges of sound pinned in with wispy rave sythn. Opening with ‘Farewell To The Fairground’, spoken words were few and far between as a shaking Harry McVeigh leads his band through a precession of songs that showcase the band’s occupation with the sublime as well as their knack for an anthem. It’s Six Feet Under morbidity in Echo and The Bunnymen might, as the baby-faced bunch blow singed pop through our ears with ‘Unfinished Business’ followed by ‘Stars’, leaving a residue that’s both sombre and exciting.

Though Charlie Cave splits a grin and rocks out with his bass to the crowd’s root, McVeigh maintains a stern stare for the majority of the set, unbroken until the final song ‘DEATH’ when the weight of this memorable night is seen to slide from his shoulders and his Lurch-ish grin pierces the heart of the odd female fan.

It’s somewhat lazy to presume that White Lies will be the next big ‘stadium’ band to engross the live world, as tonight it becomes clear that these three lads from London do much more than that. Using the universal language of music, White Lies sing about something we all eventually feel: our own mortality. And so though this intimate gig is as good a rock show as any, everyone, men included, are left with a little more sentiment than usual, which in itself is epic.

Have your say

Sign in or Register to leave comments
-