Live Music + Gig Reviews

Idlewild @ Plug, Sheffield

29 November 2006



It’s been almost a year-and-a-half since Idlewild played live before this tour, an intimate club jaunt to showcase new material from upcoming sixth full length offering due next year. Opening with Roseability, the band tear into the set at full throttle and with three minutes of perfect indie rock Idlewild are back.

Running through a set of standout tracks from their previous three records, and a few golden moments of history with renditions of When I argue I See Shapes or the shows monumentally epic closer Bronze Medal, the band manage to capture the rawness of earlier material or the warmth of more recent tracks like el Capitan or American English and take each to a higher level, thriving on the intimacy of the venue and the clear jubilation of the crowd. New single It Takes You Home blends Roddy Woomble‘s fragile, heartfelt vocals with an infectious riff in two minutes of pure brilliance, a quality running through the few new tracks scattered in tonight’s set.

Taking the edge of earlier, harder tracks from the 100 Broken Windows or Hope is Important era, but crafted with the melody and sincerity of more recent tracks seen on Warnings/Promises, the newer material puts to bed recent rumours that the bands exit from Parlophone was anything put their own choosing

To many bands, the challenge of taking the delicate sincerity or raw emotion of tracks like A Modern Way of Letting Go or Love Steals us from Loneliness and performing them live could be an insurmountable challenge – but for Idlewild, it is part of the magic that makes them stand out from the crowd of indie balladeers currently hogging the front pages of music magazines.

Discount them at your peril, this is a band just warming up – whatever direction their next album takes, rest assured Idlewild will not be going quietly into the night.

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More on Idlewild
Idlewild @ Roundhouse, London
Idlewild – Everything Ever Written
This Music Made Me: Idlewild’s Roddy Woomble
Idlewild – Post-Electric Blues
Idlewild – Make Another World