First Avenue was already pretty packed when I arrived. When I mention ‘packed’ at First Avenue, that means the crowd stretched past the sound booth and people were already congregating on the stairs to get a good view. The Big Pink was already underway. The band is from London (like Wolf Alice) and has a punk vibe, even though they are bit more toned down. Their secondary vocalist, Lady Mary Charteris, was not in attendance (she usually does programming, vocals) but the band did well as a trio with their bassist, Nicole Emery filling in on Charteris’ parts.
The Big Pink is touring in support of their last EP, Empire Underground, and are in the process of getting ready to release their third full-length record. Robbie Furze, the lead singer and guitarist really is the energy compass for the band. He was wearing his trademark leather jacket and black skinny jeans as they played through some of their greats like “Hit The Ground (Superman)” and “Dominos”.
It did seem like the chemistry was disrupted by Charteris’ absence. Nicole and Robbie didn’t get that close on stage to jam together, except near the end of the set. A real hero of this set was Bradford Lee Conroy, the band’s drummer. Many times, drummers are the moral compass of a band. There are a lot of great beats Conroy gifts the audience, but there would perhaps be more united energy had Charteris been playing with them. Maybe next time. I look forward to their next album release, and hopefully their next tour comes through town. The Big Pink is definitely a great opener for Wolf Alice and really got the energy started.
Wolf Alice is touring behind their latest release, Visions of Life, a great album with some great songs. The new album has such great tracks as “Don’t Delete the Kisses” and “Beautifully Unconventional.” The songs have a tremendous amount of energy. Wolf Alice describe their music as “Rocky Pop,” which I agree with. They definitely possess the indie rock vibe.
The four-piece plays incredibly well together. Ellie Rowsell, the lead singer (guitarist, keys), commands the stage, sporting a leopard print blouse and high waisted jeans. Joff Oddie (guitar) and Theo Ellis (bass) have incredible energy when they play and it really got the audience going. Joff wails to Rowsell’s right, Theo to her left. Joel Amey plays loud and clear on the drums and keeps the band together. They have cohesion, and when Theo and Joff go to the back and Ellie is on her guitar and joins them, it’s like fireworks.
My favorite song of theirs, “Bros,” comes on halfway through their set. Ellie echoes, duplicates and manipulates her voice through a connected second microphone. She has such a beautiful, sweet voice that she can make as light or as heavy and dirty as she wants, and it really goes through a lot of changes and evolutions during the performance.
Wolf Alice put on a great set with a couple encore performances of the songs “Blush” and “Giant Peach.” They are definitely a headliner to check out as they continue to grow in popularity.
- Yuk Foo
- You’re A Germ
- Your Loves Whore
- St. Purple & Green
- Don’t Delete The Kiss
- Planet Hunter
- Beautifully Unconventional
- Formidable Cool
- Space & Time
- Moaning Lisa Smile
- Visions of a Life
- Giant Peach