Live Music + Gig Reviews

The Ordinary Boys @ Islington Academy, London

9 August 2005

This week, The Ordinary Boys warmed up for their latest tour with an exclusive XFM sponsored gig at the Islington Academy. Support was provided by The Mitchell Brothers, whose UK Hip-Hop/Garage was a strange choice – but hell, they must have laughed at whoever first thought of putting ham and pineapple on a pizza. The Brothers’ comical geezer personas were easy to warm to. At one stage they seemed to spill more beer than the entire mosh pit combined.

Part of the appeal of seeing live music is the fact that you can jump about a bit, shout a lot and drink lager from plastic cups. The Ordinary Boys were aware that their crowd came for a good time and set about delivering the goods.

Accusations have been levelled at this band for lack of originality – and the Boys do wear their post-punk influences on their collective sleeve. But since when did sounding like The Jam or The Specials become a bad thing?

The Ordinary Boys’s set consists of three minute belters, and the crowd were clearly enjoying themselves at the unpretentious shenanigans happening on stage. Indeed, it’s refreshing to see a band that just wants to have fun, rather than descend into fashionable moodiness.

Though they provided an excellent set, it’s difficult to see how their crowd pleasing pub rock translates to the Shepherds Bush Empires of this world. They seemed unprepared for an encore (clearly having trouble with the lyrics of Little Bitch) and then left the crowd disappointed when they failed to return.

With two albums under their belts the next move for The Ordinary Boys will be crucial. It’ll be a shame if their sheer energy gets diluted on a bigger stage. Boys will be boys – but are these boys ready to grow up yet?

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