Astoria 2, London - 14.05.2008
The interest buzzing about the young and rather non-descript lads standing on stage seems puzzling when considering that this local trio have only a handful of live shows under their belts.
Yet, as White Lies’ resounding guitars build into anthems of mammoth proportions which transform the small dank insides of London’s Astoria 2 into a stadium event, this interest seems all but premature and their Fear Of Flying days are buried deep beneath the melancholic trails of their (Very) big-ballads.
With a woeful indie-pop formula that appears all too familiar, it would be easy to shelve these boys alongside the likes of, The Killers, The Bravery and newcomers Glasvegas, but the band’s singer, Harry McVeigh hollers with a surprising and penetrating resonance which is not easy to forget, particularly during recent single, Unfinished Business. The sense of familiarity within White Lies sound, is apparent by their homage to the 80s big-band showman tune era, and culprits such as, Tears For Fears and Simple Minds. There are also distinct north-western tones that surfaces along the veins of Echo and The Bunnymen, and hints of Joy Division, which all combines among their lavish multiple layers, surprising- given that they hail from West London.
There’s little in the way of crowd reaction tonight, despite Harry’s haunting vocals for last song Death, with the line “Everything’s got to be love or death”, hanging thick in the air with poignancy long after they depart from the stage. Still, due to their age (And in terms of the band’s existence), one thing these boys do have a lot of is time to grow, for there will be converts.