The Fratellis - Live @ Liverpool Olympia
We have been blessed so far this year with new music coming from some of the pioneers of Indie-rock. Artists hailing from the peak of the genre, such as Kasabian, The Wombats and The Killers have all released records that would not have looked out of place in their heyday. The difficulty of maintaining such a high standard for a whole career can not be overstated, and yet this is exactly what the Scottish outfit have achieved. Many artists simply use their fan base of their early success to sell records of nowhere near the same quality. However, after more than 10 years in the business, The Fratellis have adapted their sound to the ebb and flow of musical trends, creating an album with a slightly more electric feel, but one that is right up their with their best. ‘In Your Own Sweet Time’ would have surely been a huge success even if the trio were debutantes to the scene. This is a huge testament to their remarkable ability for writing songs consistently at such a high level, and it was an honour to see the veterans live.
Opening the night was Blues-rock duo, Black Pistol Fire, who are comparable to the likes of Royal Blood. They travelled all the way from Toronto to bring their full-throttle, improvised performances to the UK, and set up the night perfectly for what was to come. Although the three ‘Brothers’ may not be filled with the same teenage-angst they once were, they still know how to command a stage, and their first track ‘Baby Don’t You Lie To Me!’ instantly filled the room with the intangible energy that has given them their name. However, the night really came alive at around the halfway point, with the infectious fan-favourite, ‘For The Girl’ followed by ‘I’ve Been Blind’ off the new album, and perhaps the best example of their newfound love for production. It’s euphoric instrumental section carries an added layer of poignancy than the average song, and these effects were only amplified on the night, leaving the crowd feeling uplifted and fully immersed in the endorphin rush of a live event. At this point, any lingering cobwebs from their time away from the stage had been well and truly blown away as they entered their element. Especially lead-singer Jon Fratelli, who is a credit to the music scene, telling us that “I do what I do because it's the most enjoyable way I can think of spending my time" in our interview with him which you can read here. This certainly came across, as he brought every ounce of his eccentric swagger to this fitting city, and seemed to enjoy being back where he belongs just as much as the audience.
The climax of the show was of course, what every individual in that room was waiting for, 'Chelsea Dagger'. It is a song that is firmly woven into the fabric of indie culture, and has become synonymous with the partying youth. Played live, it became a sweaty concoction of its football-style chanting, and testosterone-fuelled dancing, a moment that is hard to recreate anywhere else. The synchronization between band members, their clear love for live music, and some of the greatest songs of the past decade and a half, made for a unmissable event. With the trio heading out to bring a taste of British passion to America starting on the 26th of April, it would be illogical not to see such a culture-defining band play while you still can!