Mona and Transfer – Live at Shepherds Bush Empire, London

Two for one

It’s a very rare occasion that you get two great American guitar bands in one venue on the same night. It seems that Shepherds Bush Empire won the musical lottery when Mona brought Transfer along to play to a packed crowd.

Hailing from San Diego, Transfer have been climbing the ladder to greatness, touring with Brandon Flowers, White Lies, Mona and next month Kaiser Chiefs. Picking up new fans along the way and gaining rave reviews. Even Paul McCartney popped in to say hello when they recorded a session for Live at Abbey Road.

Tonight they’re on top form playing songs from their debut album ‘Future Selves’. A hidden gem that when you hear once, you just won’t be able to stop.

Transfer are a real rock and roll band with influences from The Beatles and Led Zepplin. They’ve acted on these influences well, creating an atmospheric and exciting performances. Their enthusiasm and passion for what they are doing makes them shine out in the Empire.

Highlights of the set have to be ‘Losing Composure’ which gets the crowd going with its catchy chorus and guitar rhythms. On the left hand side, there’s a crowd of fans hanging onto every word of ‘Wake to Sleep’, arms in the air and some serious head nodding. As they leave the stage, it seems it won’t be long until Transfer are headlining Shepherds Bush Empire with their passion and great tunes.

A quick turnaround and then it’s time for Mona to grace this famous stage. The crowd go mental. There are roars, screams and some frantic jumping.

Nick Brown, lead singer is highly energetic, blasting his lyrics into the crowd while jumping around the stage. It’s hot, sweaty and everyone is loving Mona. At the back of the Empire, people as casually drinking and nodding their heads while near the front there are mosh pits and people fist pumping into space.

Highlights have to be ‘Shooting the Moon’ where Nick climbed the speakers on the side of the stage, arms waving in the air with the crowd hanging on to every word. ‘Teenagers’ is also a great catchy tune that makes you want to hear more.

Hailing from Tennessee, Mona can often be referred to as another Kings of Leon, but they’re so different in their own way that they stand out from the crowd. The band show that they still haven’t forgotten their roots, covering Johnny Cash dedicating it to the Man in Black. This is a rock and roll show after all.

As the night draws to a close and the house lights are switched back on, everyone leaving has a massive grin on their face. They should do, after all they’ve been treated to two brilliant rock and roll shows.

Words and photos by Sophie Williams

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