The Naked and Famous
O2 ABC, Glasgow
From the moment I was introduced to the Naked and Famous hit 'Young Blood', I fell in love. Only days later had I downloaded and listened to the entire 'Passive Me Aggressive You' album. It soon became apparent that I was not the only person to have suddenly fell under the band’s infectious spell, in just two years the Kiwi band have gone from recording tracks in an Aukland bedroom to the top of the New Zeland charts with international radio play, songs featured in popular US TV shows such as Gossip Girl and YouTube viewings in the millions for 'Young Blood'. Needless to say, this considered, I had high expectations for their performance at the O2 ABC Glasgow.
The band came on stage and opened with 'The Ends', a clever choice of starting song. The opening delicate guitar solo built into a heavily discorded guitar riff, which got the crowd jumping. This alternative rock feel of this song set the tone for the rest of the performance. The comparisons between the electro synth pop music of the Naked and Famous and that of bands such as MGMT and Passion Pit are less dominant in their live music than they are on the album as the rock elements in the tracks have more of a prominence on stage.
The third song played was the hit 'Punching in a Dream' which made the most of Alisa’s voice and got the entire audience bouncing as the fans sang every word back to her.
A personal highlight was the performance of 'The Sun', one of my favourite tracks from the album. In a live setting the minimalist experimentation and intricacies of this song truly shone and echoed of the subtle talent apparent in Radiohead’s music. The performance also showcased the brilliant vocal unison between Thom and Alisa, reminiscent to that of the XX. The interaction between the two leads produced a real chemistry and worked well live.
The band performed the entire 'Passive me, Aggressive You' album. The track 'All of This', which kicked started the bands success in 2009, was played in the middle of the set and was met with great reception, still continuously impressing crowds. This was followed by the classic indie hit 'Birds' and 'No Way', which strongly featured more of Thom’s dark guitar riffs, proving to those who label the Naked and Famous as 'just another pop band', that there is much diversity to their music.
The band ended on a high with the celebration of youth and innocence that is 'Young Blood' and I left the gig feeling pretty satisfied with the performance which just met my high expectations.