Lock 17 (Ex-DIngwalls), Camden, September 17th

How dare they? The sheer audacity of a band this DULL calling themselves "The Thrills" is breathtaking. And it's the only thing that is.

Approaching tonight, an XFM showcase gig, with an (almost) open mind, i was ready to be proven wrong. I've never liked The Thrills as such, their self-concious, californian surf-shtick always felt really contrived and I'd be hard pressed to tell one of their singles from another, but loads of people seem to like them, so I'll give them a chance.

Turns out i was dead right. I don't think I've ever seen a group of musicians look so uninterested, so bored and so lumpen. The picture above adequately showcases the expressions worn by each member of the band throughout tonight's gig. And that's a publicity shot for chris'sakes!! Take a look at their website (if you can be bothered) and you'll see that this is exactly how they look ALL the time.

Frontman Conor Deasy does a passable imitation of a rock singer, hanging on the microphone and imploring the crowd with his eyes, set below a formidable one-piece eyebrow, and shouting of "Are you ready to rock?!" (before possibly the weediest rock-out I've ever witnessed) but the rest of the band? They barely move, the guitarist wanders around the stage staring blankly at the crowd with his mouth slightly open like a "special" schoolkid whilst the rest of the band ignore each other. In this intimate venue, where band and fans should be able to really vibe off each other there is absolutely no communication, no feeling of inclusion.

They're going through the motions. There's no passion. It's rock by numbers and it only gets about as far as "1,2,3..." before losing interest. "Whatever Happened to Corey Haim" they ask. Quite apt. Whereas Black Rebel Motorcycle Club ask "Whatever happened to my Rock N Roll?", the Thrills are more concerned with a has-been 80's b-movie film star that nobody cared about in the first place. I'm amazed that anyone cares about The (so-called) Thrills.

Postscript : The Thrills are supporting the Pixies on their American tour!!!! This is just.... just... un-fucking-believable... unimaginable...

Richy [ September 18th, 2004 ]

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