An intimate collision with the explosive – Nothing But Thieves stun a sell-out crowd.
Nothing But Thieves are killing it right now. Having just released their second album, Broken Machine, their UK tour has been a major success. In a run of shows that will conclude in two nights at a sold-out London Roundhouse, I was so glad that the band had chosen to return to The LCR for this occasion. The LCR is one of my favourite venues, not only does it hold memories of fun and frolics of hundreds of club nights it also hosts a lot of talented artists on an almost weekly basis. If it wasn’t for the monetary constraints of being a student, I am sure that I would be there for almost every show. I had to battle like crazy to purchase a ticket for this one and I am glad I did. Nothing But Thieves are always worth it.
After listening to Skepta’s Shutdown and Mr. Brightside by The Killers for the umpteenth time, the lights dropped and I filled with excitement. The band were greeted by a monumental roar from the crowd who had waited eagerly for their return, having played the venue two years ago both the band and the fans seemed relieved to be in each other’s companies once more. I’m Not Made By Design was the perfect opener. Conor Mason’s vocals slipped through the opening verse effortlessly and as the lights came up for the first time the room shattered into a thousand voices to join the band in executing the huge chorus. In a similar fashion, Live Like Animals had the crowd urging for more, there was very little let up in the pace. Trip Switch delivered, as per, forcing the room into nothing but hip swaying and chub jiggling. Beautiful.
Hanging, Wake Up Call and Itch were highlights in the set, to be honest the band could have played any collection of songs from 2015’s self-titled album and they would have been a welcome addition to the evening. Each and every one was executed perfectly, musically tight and vocally exceptional. The songs that made me fall in love with the band took me right back to that feeling of awe. Drawing Pins was my favourite moment of the set, the bang of the band in harmony with Mason’s voice is always a treat live. The outro of this one was an incredible experience, it felt as though everyone in the room was focusing on belting out the words as loud as they could. The lighting and reception from the audience made the atmosphere for this one particularly special.
Broken Machine was a wonderful addition to the set, the titular track from their latest release offered a little bit of everything. The intimate colliding with the explosive. I Was Just a Kid was also a treat, I was very much looking forward to hearing how the band would sound with a fleshed out setlist now that they have more than one album. What a treat it was.
Graveyard Whistling and If I Get High left me revelling in Mason’s vocals, how can one even begin trying to explain them? Not only is his voice one of the best in the alternative genre, I feel as though it must be one of the best in the industry as a whole. I struggle to find a band that can give you such a delicate, yet powerful sound in the same way Nothing But Thieves can, I attribute this heavily to Mason. These songs were beautiful and were key in producing a well-balanced set.
About three-quarters of the way through we were gifted a cover of Tom Petty’s Free Fallin’, a delicate rendition of a classic which I would like to think the big man himself would have adored. Once again, the vocals of Conor Mason were flawless, he trundled meekly through the opening verse and exploded into a chorus like I have never heard before. The power of his voice overpowered the room, causing everyone to put down their phones and stop sipping on their pints. Breath-taking.
Particles and Amsterdam made up the encore, with both songs coming from their latest musical endeavour it highlighted the success of Broken Machine. Both songs have a certain stadium quality about them, for every one of the 1500 fans inside the venue it felt as though it was an intimate occasion, especially when you think about what the future holds for the boys. If you haven’t already given the band a listen, what the fuck are you doing?
Having seen the band headline 2000trees (you can catch our review of the festival here: https://wavebyte.co.uk/2017/07/14/2000-trees-2017-review/) I knew the monumentally high standards of their live set, it is safe to say they raised it even further with this one. In a week that has seen some of my favourite artistes tarnished with murky allegations, I must say that is was nice to enjoy music for the right reasons, an exercise of delicate craftsmanship and passion. Bravo, Nothing But Thieves.