NME Radar Tour @ Koko 13th October 2009

I arrived outside the Koko at 4pm and when I got outside there was only one person there and that was Steve Gigs Legend. Now I have seen Steve at quite a few gigs I have been to in the past. Well we chatted about gigs we are going to and Marina among other things. As I had unlimited internet access on my phone I was tweeting Marina as it was something to do. When we were sitting on the steps we heard Marina sound checking I Am Not A Robot. She sounded brilliant. Later on I then went to the Hope and Anchor pub only to see Marina get into a car as she had finished the sound check. Seeing her go into a car was completely by chance. When I was nearing the pub Marina spotted me from inside the car and waved at me. Later on she tweeted me saying go to a coffee shop and get something warm to drink. But due to me being reluctant to leave my spot in the queue I decided to wait till the doors opened at 7pm. There were only 4 people in the queue but I didn’t want to risk it. Well doors opened on time and I managed to get to the barrier. A big projection screen was covering the stage it was showing a video that NME had put together which was played on a loop. This video featured little bits about each band but Marina had been omitted from this which I found to be quite bad.  The night kicked off at 7.45pm with Yes Giantess. I was extremely fortunate to find myself right in the centre (which is my favourite spot). Well the set which consisted seven songs proved to be a enjoyable and easy to listen to set. The 4 piece band which consists of lead singer Jan Rosenfeld, Chase Nicholl, Joey Sulkowski and Karl Hohn. The band originate from Boston, Massachusetts and they stated off the night with a brilliant 7 track set which was over in a flash.  Well Yes Giantess are beautiful synth pop at its best. The tracks were so enjoyable and easy to listen too. The band clearly enjoy performing the songs. The set included The Word, Demons, Sparks, Can’t Help It, You Were Young, Dun Gets Low and Tuff N Stuff. It is hard to pick a favourite song because they were all brilliant and suited my music taste. The set was so good I want to hear more from this band. The set started off with The Word which is a song which is electro/ pop. The lyrics are brilliant and it is a song that can that can create a atmosphere (well all the songs can create a atmosphere). Sparks saw Jan Rosenfeld playing a cow bell during part of the song. Can’t Help It was another brilliant song with a catchy chorus. You Were Young which was on the first vinyl release is a up tempo song. Dun Gets Low was probably my favourite on the night. The lyrics are catchy and there is a beat to it. The moment the song starts you know its going to be a cracker. It starts off with the line “I know you baby”. The set ended with the first single Tuff N Stuff which oozed energy. Towards the end Jan came to the barrier and urged the crowd to dance and create a intense atmosphere. Following on was 5 piece band Local Natives. Hailing from America they performed a short but sweet 6 track set. The set included World News, forthcoming single Camera Talk, Airplanes, Talking Heads cover Warning Sign, Wide Eyes and the debut release on Chess Club Sun Hands. The set went down a treat it was a short showcase of the debut album “Gorilla Manor”. Well the songs were a mixture of Indie and Rock and for me the two best songs on the night were Airplanes and the set closer Sun Hands. Both Camera Talk and Wide Eyes were a crowd pleaser. The cover of Warning Sign got a good reception to but Sun Hands stole the set. It was simply amazing a entourage of about 15 people took to the stage to play instruments and dance along to the song.

Marina and the Diamonds were next up on the night. This was Marina’s return to form after having missed the previous NME Radar gigs due to flu. Well the set was completely faultless. Marina took to the stage wearing a jumper which could resemble as a dressing gown. Marina put the hood on which made her look like a fluffy sheep. Well the set opener was Girls which is a strong song which Marina delivered perfectly. It was definitely a return to form after having missed the 4 previous dates. The thing I like is that Marina puts all her energy into the songs to give off one amazing performance. I love the lyrics especially the chorus “Is there any possibility, You’ll quit gossiping about me, To hide your insecurities, All you say is blah blah”. Seventeen is a change it is a softer song with a strong chorus. The verses and chorus are stunning. I like it that the lyrics are catchy ones and the song has a fast pace from the very start. When the song ends Marina interacts with the crowd by saying “Hello London” and “Are you having a good time”. The song which followed was I Am Not A Robot. The thing I love about hearing this song live is that it is so different compared to the physical version. It is delivered strongly and has perfect lyrics that you can sing along to. The verses are incredible. It starts off slow and when it gets to the second verse the pace is taken up a notch. I Am Not A Robot is one amazing song to hear live and it went down well with the audience as well. Marina then makes her way over keyboard. The next song is Obsessions a song that I like and one that delivers a message that everyone has their obsessions. Well the song starts off with a slow beautiful verse then it kicks into a strong bridge. The second verse is more fast paced and I really like that verse. The lyrics to this song are absolutely brilliant and it makes this song a complete cracker. Up next was a cover which appears on the b side to the forthcoming single Mowgli’s Road. This being a take on Late Of The Pier’s Space And The Woods. This version sounded incredible. It is more rocky but Marina manages to pull it off and puts her own stamp onto it. This version is so good it could make single itself. For the next song Shampain Marina urged people with drinks to raise them in the air. This is a nice song one that I really like. The chorus is rather catchy and there is a beat to this song from the very start. From listening to the lyrics my take on the song is that there was a wedding but it did not happen and the person mentioned in the song is drinking to forget that day. The forthcoming single Mowgli’s Road closed a completely faultless set. Before starting Marina thanked NME and then apologised to any one who went to the dates that Marina did not make. Well this was a brilliant song to end on it is really energetic. It shows that you can make a good song from any lyrics. Who exactly are the spoons coming after Marina? Marina puts everything into this song it is delivered so strongly. When it ends Marina leaves the stage to a rapture of applause.


I Am Not A Robot
Space And The Woods
Mowgli’s Road

At 10.10pm the main course was served. This being the delightful Golden Silvers who in fact have grown on me since the first time I saw them supporting Florence and the Machine in May. The band consisting of Ben Moorhouse, Robden Nunez and lead singer Gwilym Gold performed a set of songs from the album True Romance and one new song. The set included Magic Touch, Shakes, Another Universe, True No9 Blues, Bone Breaker and Queen Of The 21st Century (Please Venus, Arrows Of Eros and Fade To Black were sung too but I left early to avoid the rush of people leaving at the end). My highlight was Shakes now I really love that song a lot of energy is put into that song. Bone Breaker went down nicely as well it is always to hear a new song. Well the set opener Magic Touch was a good song to start on. It is played at a fast pace and it is a gentle song with some terrific lyrics. For Another Universe before singing the song Gwilym Gold talked to the crowd but what he was saying was echoing. True No9 Blues was a real crowd pleaser. Well after Bone Breaker I made my way to the balcony mainly to avoid all the people who left at the end.

OVERALL: I really enjoyed this night. Yes Giantess were amazing I would love to hear more from them. I really liked Local Natives and the closing song of their set was the one that got me. That ending was truly brilliant. Marina and the Diamonds what can I say. Well it was a true return to form. Marina delivered a strong performance and the seven song set went down well with the crowd. Golden Silvers are an act that have slowly grown on me but after hearing them again I now really like the music and I look forward to seeing them again in the future.


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