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|The Music are storming America, one club at a time
Paradise Rock Club
By NICK TAVARES
STATIC and FEEDBACK Editor
To hear the Music and see them in their element on stage can be rather intimidating. They’re obviously talented,
bursting with confidence and completely comfortable on stage. They’re also the owners of one of the biggest,
most imposing sounds on the planet. Factor all that in with the fact that they’re barely of drinking age in this
country, that they might only be at the cusp of their talent, and the only thing left in store is expectations.
Expectations that this could be the biggest, most important band since Nirvana, since Jane’s Addiction, since
the Who. That can leave the listener/neophyte with high hopes that could only be toppled, not topped.
So, I’m going to try my hardest to avoid all of that. But it won’t be easy, because I just witnessed what could be
the greatest band coming through play an incredible set at a club so small you could feel the bartender sneeze
from across the room.
Take the Long Road and Walk it
The Truth is No Words
I Need Love
Into The Night
Bleed From Within
On this night at the Paradise Rock Club in Boston, the
Music are about three dates into their headlining tour of
America on the heels of their second album, Welcome
to the North. With that album starting to earn airplay on
some alternative rock stations, it seems like they have
the path to rock stardom, Wembley Stadium and
platinum record frames laid out for them. But for any
band to get there, they have to first make it through the
clubs and prove their mettle live. The Music are doing
that, and doing it well.
Setting the stage for them were Kasabian. Another
British act, Kasabian set the bar high for the headliners.
Fronted by Tom Meighan, a fantastic frontman who
seems to be two parts Mick Jagger, one part Alex from
Kubrick’s A Clockwork Orange, Kasabian put on an
intense show for just under an hour. Full of heavy beats,
thick riffs and pounding drums, the band really made
their mark on the crowd. Songs such as “55” and
“Processed Beats” showed their affinity for stomping,
evolving songs, borrowing from Ride, Beck and
everyone before, after and inbetween. There were more
than a few members of the audience who questioned if the Music would even be up for following an opening act
that solid, no easy task for any band.
But that was all just speculation. They were ready.
The band took the stage and rolled into their debut single, “Take the Long Road and Walk It,” and showed their
fine form. Tough, swaggering and forceful, the Music seem to have total belief in their sound and their
substance. Singer Robert Harvey has a soaring voice and stage presence that will lead to inevitable
comparisons to Zeppelin’s Robert Plant that probably won’t go away. During vocal breaks and instrumental
passages, Harvey dances and weaves around his band mates effortlessly. He never comes off as showboating,
though. His motions seem to be entirely organic and just another part of the music, a singer who actually enjoys
The set was a fairly even mix of the band’s two albums, and on all the
material they showed a growth that’s both refreshing and absolutely
necessary to continue that progress. The older songs are obviously old
hat to the band at this point, but they don’t sound worn down or tired. They
have a life and a spring behind them, and extra little kick that made each
song that much better than their plastic counterparts. Tracks such as “The
Truth is No Words,” “Getaway” and “The People” had more energy and life
behind them than they did a year ago, while “Disco” saw the band striving
to reach new heights.
On the flipside, the newer cuts sounded much more powerful on stage
than they do on Welcome to the North. “Freedom Fighters” and “I Need
Love,” for example, both featured Harvey’s vocals booming while guitarist
Adam Nutter laid down the sonic foundation behind him.
Nutter and bassist Stuart Coleman really should be commended, as well.
The Music have an absolutely huge sound, and for most of the night
(Harvey occasionally chipped in with his plugged-in SG), the weight of this noise was placed squarely on their
shoulders, and they never so much as blinked out of time.
Through it all was a drummer who will have to work hard to escape comparisons to the late great Keith Moon.
Behind the skinny, boyish frame of Phil Jordan hides an absolute hurricane on the skins. Jordan tirelessly
pounded away, keeping the ground floor thumping throughout the set.
Just before midnight, it was all over. Two excellent bands had just given an audience two great sets. Both bands
seem to believe that they have the potential to be great. Both hopped on stage to strut their stuff. Both could one
day find greatness.
The Music are just a little bit closer to it.
The Music are currently on tour. Check out their site at www.themusic.co.uk. Check out Kasabian at
www.kasabian.co.uk. Their debut album will be released in the United States on March 8, 2005.