No doubt, in terms of likability, We Are Scientists sit somewhere between Dave Grohl, and a pail full of kittens. Fluffy kittens. But in terms of commitment, tonight wasn’t really all that. In fact, if on this special day the crowd were the expectant betrothed waiting for the ultimate act of sacrifice from their one true love, they’d have been more than a little disappointed.
“Sorry we’re late. We were catching up on Lost…” moustachioed bassist Chris Cain deadpans, as they stroll on, and you do wonder if he’s actually joking. Come on Chris, we were expecting flowers and oysters and at least three songs off the new album. And failing that, at least let us know what happens at the end of the fourth series.
No? Polar bears? The others? The other others? Fine. Well then, hows about a professional, workmanlike, and yet slightly uninspired trawl through a performance which is successful in both reminding us how fantastically charming the boundless energy of the old material is, and how unnervingly like The Killers some of the new material sounds?
Yep, you’d still run a marathon in razor wire hemmed trousers to hear Nobody Move, Nobody Gets Hurt one more time. And the very fact that the short set closing Great Escape succeeds where legions have previously failed in getting a guestlist heavy crowd in central Soho to move more than a quizzical eyebrow indicates quite how magnificently fun We Are Scientists are, but newbie After Hours just frolicks along, Moog tinkling, guitar chiming, and it just doesn’t charm with the same instantaneous brilliance.
Maybe it’s too much to assume that Brain Thrust Mastery was going to be the same blitz of dazzling guitars and lovelorn lyrics that With Love And Squalor was, but honestly guys, the only things you really need to be cribbing from the Flowers ‘n’ co U2 appreciation society is facial hair advice.
There is the possibility that it’ll be a grower. But to really do it any sort of justice it’s going to take a gig with a bit more atmosphere, and a hell of a lot more oomph. But we still like you anyway.