Wednesday 14 March 2018

On Stage: The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart @ Tolhuistuin

I'm not sure it is a well chosen band name but Kip Berman at least he tried to be original when he came up with The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart, named after an unpublished children's story. It does end up with good results when searching on Google which is one of the things to take into account nowadays. Berman has steadily been writing and recording music for over ten years now and is now touring in support of the latest LP The Echo Of Pleasure that came out half a year ago.

The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart at Paradiso Tolhuistuin Amsterdam, March 12 2018

Berman proved he can write good songs and continues to do so. Catchy choruses sometimes backed up by friendly guitar chords, grunge like sound walls at others. He has come up with a good sound which also holds up live on stage and it reminds of The Jesus And Mary Chain and The Smiths now and then. Berman's vocals aren't always spot on though and he seems to sing in the same register most of the times. The new songs aren't a lot different from the older ones, maybe just a change in details. Everything glues together nicely on stage. However the band is playing a pretty bleak show as they aren't exactly radiating a lot of energy.

Berman looks like a nice guy. He doesn't talk a lot but when he does his little chats feel a bit uncomfortable. These moments are also causing the show to slow down even more, which isn't helping the performance that is already lacking fire. Not much is happening on stage, causing the audience to lose interest. This is obvious from the lukewarm response after a song finishes. The only time there's a connection is in the first encore when Berman is on stage all by himself singing Leonard Cohen's 'Suzanne'. This concert was part of the Indiestad pass so many people came here because they own this pass, like me. I'm afraid they didn't make a lot of new fans tonight.

All Pictures

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