Les Savy Fav
Thunderbirds Are Now!
The Garage, London
Thunderbirds Are Now! are buddies of Les Savy Fav who also happen to have their debut album ‘Justamustache‘ recently released via the Fav’s own label French Kiss. And true friends help each other out right? Les Savy Fav have done the right thing and have brought Thunderbirds over to the UK for the first time and right from the start of their set it’s immediately obvious we’re in the company of greatness. They are rocking and wild, yet slick, tight and melodic and manage to walk the difficult line between quirky post-hardcore and commercial rock without compromising either aspect of their sound. This is a band you’re going to be hearing a lot about next year and the buzz starts right here. Besides, any friend of Les Savy Favs’ is a friend of ours. Such is the greatness of the mighty Les Savy Fav, anything they touch turns to gold so the Thunderbirds future is in good hands and watch them go!
Les Savy Fav have been deconstructing rock for nearly ten years now. Sounding like a spiky collision between the angular dance rock of Gang Of Four and the scratchy white noise anger of Fugazi, they are led by the gloriously unhinged frontman Tim Harrington, who, it wouldn’t be unfair to say, has the wild crazy eyes and unkempt appearance of a hobo and borderline schitsophrenic. We’re sure he’s a lovely well balanced individual offstage, but put him in front of a crowd and he turns into a twitching, mischievous imp dead set on causing confusion and disorder around him as the band provide the brilliant soundtrack to his insanity. At one point he grabs a video camera from someone in the front row and swings it above his head, then he’s got his big belly out, climbing around the stage, sinking his teeth into the P.A. system, itching to cause that little bit more chaos and constantly pushing the boundaries. He also has a great voice, injecting addictive vocal melodies into every riff and rhythm and allowing tracks like ‘We’ll Make A Lover Out Of You‘ and ‘Rome (Upside Down)‘ to creep into your subconscious and stick!
Yet, considering how amazing Les Savy Fav are tonight, you’re still left with the feeling that they were holding something back. Past tours have seen them reach amazing new levels of musical insanity but tonight it was almost as if they didn’t want to embarrass Weird War by blowing them right off the stage, which they could have easily done and quite frankly, did.
Weird War feature Ian Svenonius from classic Dischord Records bands Nation Of Ulysses and The Make Up although Weird War aren’t a patch on his former visionary bands. Weird War play clean and funky rock n’roll that is just way too clean and not rock n’roll enough. While Ian’s past bands have been abrasive and harsh, Weird War’s white man funk just isn’t particularly good. Or funky.
Predictably, the crowd thins considerable during Weird War’s headline set. Maybe next time they won’t be foolish enough to allow Les Savy Fav on before them!