Alter The Press!


Review: Give it a Name - Brixton Academy - 17/04/2009

For several years, the Give it a Name brand has been at the forefront of the live music scene in the UK. This years version however, is a far cry from previous incarnations. The single stage, smaller venue and arguably weaker lineup, allinged with poorer ticket sales in comparison to previous years, shows the Give it a Name love affair is dwindling.

Opening today's proceedings are Californian metalcore act, In This Moment. The band are solid, but bring nothing new to the table, with the formulaic screams, cleans and obligatory breakdowns. Frontwoman Maria bucks the trend, but even her best attempts to woo the male audience fall short, once the novelty of her skimpy dress wears thin, leaving largely bemused audience.

In contrast, Lights, hailing from Canada, demonstates perfectly how a female frontperson can maintain audience attention, without objectification. Her brand of synth driven pop might not be familiar to the realms of GIAN fans, but, following today's performance, it could be the start of something very good indeed. The cheese-o-meter is on full by the time her set finishes, but she brings something new to the table, and at a festival famed for niche emo acts, brings a welcome respite. She is back to these shores in May, and well worth checking out.

Emery put in a solid performance, but their display is overshadowed impressively by The King Blues, who with 'Save The World, Get The Girl' have an anthem in the making. They are definitely a band on the rise, watch this space.

Much like Emery, The Academy Is do little to impress, and put in a very standard performance. Frontman William Beckett's swooning is borderline cringeworthy, but clearly impresses the female contingient. It's TAI by numbers, but job done as far as the band are concerned.

The Blackout are far more impressive than many of the previous acts on tonight. Frontmen Sean and Gavin, are swinging their microphones throughout, and between them, tempo rarely falls below top gear. Generic, yes, but as a self confessed party band, they more than provide on the entertainment front.

Headliners Enter Shikari are always going to split opinion. They have pioneered themselves, and formed their own niche, creating hundreds of imitators. Their rise to fame was rapid, however, the thousands of adoring fans filling Brixon Academy speaks volumes for the hard work the band have put in. Their recipe is now all too familiar, with synth, loops, screams and harmonised vocals. Musically, they stick to what they know, and for them, it works. New song 'Antwerpen' is met with rapturous applause, but the highlight is old favourite 'Sorry, Your Not Winner.'

Their set though, is perhaps overshadowed by frontman, Rou's rant, condemning the capital's Police. The stage is often a pulpit of political views, but in a room brimming with thousands of impressionable teenagers, is arguably not a wise decision.

Enter Shikari, will be around in a year's time, but in a time of increasing uncertainty, the same cannot be said for Give it a Name.

Chris Powers

Alter The Press!