Tuesday 6 November 2018

On Stage: IDLES @ Melkweg

There's a lot of stuff going on in the world today, lots of crazy things and a lot to get angry about. IDLES are a British band who use these themes in their music that sounds angry and urgent. At the same time it rocks very hard and their live shows are starting to become legendary as they proved on Later...with Jools Holland a few weeks back. Let's see if they can bring this to the stage at Melkweg as well.

IDLES at Melkweg Amsterdam, November 4 2018

As if there was any doubt beforehand, of course this band has no trouble taking Melkweg by storm. From the first song on this place is on fire and goes completely wild. The Bristol band play their songs with a lot of energy, chaos and madness on stage. The band members are running around stage like mad men, doing crazy dances, fronted by charismatic singer Joe Talbot. At the back drummer Jon Beavis is watching everything with a huge smile, now and then laughing out loud with some of the craziness going on around him.

But it isn't all fun and games, because the band do touch on serious ground in many songs. Talbot mentions this in some of his in between speeches. The songs are packaged in lively and savage rock songs, that are easy to scream along to. But it is clear the band is addressing serious issues that they really care about. Their music is the perfect way for them to channel this anger and frustration, and get their message across.

Talbot addresses the crowd in a relaxed manner while at the same time thanking them many times. It's obvious he is in total control of this crowd and can play them any way he likes. He is often singing to individual crowd members, as if he wants to convince every single one of them personally. He could let them tear this place apart but he settles for a a huge jumping pit in front of the stage. One moment there's a proper stage invasion that fills it up completely with wild crowd members. At the end of the song Talbot asks them kindly to leave the stage so the show can continue. Within no time the people have left the stage and the band continues playing.

Although IDLES may sound and look like a punk rock band having fun playing wild music, they prove today they have found a good balance between fun and social awareness. There doesn't seem to be a better time for their music to find its way into the hearts of many youngsters who like the band feel there is something not right in the world and need a way to blow off steam. What better way than to go crazy with IDLES?

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01. Colossus
02. Never Fight a Man With a Perm
03. Mother
04. Faith in the City
05. I'm Scum
06. Danny Nedelko
07. Divide & Conquer
08. White Privilege
09. 1049 Gotho
10. Samaritans
11. Television
12. Great
13. Love Song
14. Benzocaine
15. Exeter
16. Cry To Me
17. Well Done
18. Rottweiler

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