Monday 6 October 2014

Passionate Show By Future Islands

Besides all the bands and artists who are carefully crafted and shaped by producers and record companies, completely adapted to a certain style or image in order to come up with hit machines (= money machines), there are still bands who are working hard and struggling. A small leap of fate can suddenly alter their careers. Future Islands have been around for ten years and already made three records before this year everything changed. Their new album Singles is definitely a record that sticks out. It landed them a performance in the David Letterman show, which went viral and put the band on the map.

Future Islands at Melkweg Amsterdam, October 3 2014

Of course it are the dance moves of singer Samuel Herring which made the difference. His unorthodox moves and passionate performance make all the difference. But it would be unfair to only focus on that. The band have come up with a wonderful album that is full of smart electro pop songs, including their smash hit 'Seasons'. Tonight they prove there's more about them than silly dance moves, although of course it's impossible to forget about that. But the sold out show in the biggest hall of the Melkweg is more than justified. The band even think this could be their biggest show so far.

Herring apologizes for his voice, that indeed sounds a bit hoarse, although it's only the start of their European tour. It's no wonder, since the way he keeps changing his vocals, asks a lot from his voice. He's singing low, high, everything in between, sometimes belting out phrases or even manages to cough up impressive grunts. Together with his passionate stage performance and the monkey like dance moves, Herring is definitely the one everybody is looking at, although the frontman looks the opposite of your regular rock star. He seems to be completely into the music, raising his hand like a musical star to emphasize his lyrics, feeling up himself, licking his arms or simply almost crawling around stage. It's magnificent to watch while his band buddies are playing their parts almost anonymously, somewhat unwitnessed in the back.

It doesn't matter since they are playing a tight set, that consists mostly of songs from their new record, including my personal favourite 'Sun In The Morning', with older songs scattered throughout. Their big hit 'Seasons' is about halfway the set and gets many cheers. But the crowd loves every song and minute of their show, joining in on the dancing. After an hour the band comes back for an encore and plays a few more songs. The energy level in front of the stage has reached a peak by now and during the last song 'Vireo's Eye' a girl jumps on stage to dance. It triggers a complete stage invasion, where the band looks a bit overwhelmed. Herring finishes up quickly and leaves the stage while rest of the band receive well deserved hugs.

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