Motion City Soundtrack @ Astoria, Soho, London
6th October 2007
After being delayed by nearly 3 months Motion City Soundtrack finally made the trek across the Atlantic to hit the London Stage. High demand also meant the venue was upgraded to London Astoria, from Astoria 2 (Mean Fiddler). Not being here before I really like the place, Upstairs is a more chilled out seating area of considerable size and downstairs is intimate enough for great views and still have plenty of space for carnage to erupt down in crowd central!
Support this evening it has to be said were weak. After missing the opening act due choosing the pub over standing in the outrageously long queue Straylight Run were doing their best to warm the crowd. A task which they failed spectacularly! Their pop had melody but no bite, lyrics were sugarcoated but not catchy, there’s more life in a clean room than on stage.
Good thing that Motion City Soundtrack were up next!! Kicking off with lead track from their new album Fell In Love Without You they sound as urgent and essential as ever with huge hooks, quirky vocals and idiosyncratic lyrics almost as impressive the ludicrous hairstyling of frontman Pierre. Racing through every highlight of their 3 album back catalogue with the nonsensical lyrics of Capital H, punk rock explosions of Attractive Today, the bittersweet balladry of Hold Me Down and electro-monster Time Turned Fragile.
With this band its hard not to love them, their attitude of fun and self ridicule is amazing for an American pop-punk band and their good nature also shone through. They even stopped midway through a track, because a kid had gone down in a frenzied heap of moshers in the middle of the crowd. This connection they have with the crowd is very unusual and their genuine concern for their fans is a breath of fresh air. But then they have always been more pop than punk!
MCS’s new material was well received on the whole and crowd energy didn’t let up even if their vocals dried up. Where I Belong, This is For Real and the outstanding Point of Extinction drove the new album forwards with more well crafted hooks and vocals so catchy they should be quarantined.
The encore was short and swift but in a set already packed with so much goodness including a rare track from an early Ep and also answering requests from the crowd (they played Red Dress…woo!!) its hard to fault. Especially as they sign off the evening what is possibly their signature tune The Future Freaks Me Out .
This was one fantastic pop show and really this band deserve more attention from the British media, but I’m just happy to be able to see these guys in their element entertaining and producing a mammoth of a show!
Motion City Soundtrack’ed the perfect gig and it was awesome!