The Cinematics | 06.20.07

live_cineIn fact, during the band's last number, the slowed-down charmer "Asleep at the Wheel," there was such a wall of sound and crashing melodies that I was amazed they were still just four; so great—and wondrous—was the noise that it seemed a full orchestra should have been present.

 

 

w/The Bravery, Photo Atlas
Pop's, Sauget, Ill.

Leave it to me to only catch 1.2 of the 3 bands of the night. Actually, it was intentional, and I'll explain why. It's not that I'm not open to hearing new music or having my horizons broadened; it's just that it was an exceptionally busy week and I already had four other shows on the calendar. I was on show overload. So I went to see who I absolutely had to, and then I went home.

We arrived in time to catch a couple of songs from Photo Atlas, and we were impressed. For sake of comparison, I'll use Conor Oberst. Before Bright Eyes blew up, he had a rock band called Desparecidos. Take that band and throw in a dance-rock flair, and you've got Photo Atlas. Really solid stuff, in other words; I'll be checking them out.

Holding down the middle slot of the night was Scotland's The Cinematics, the band I'd come to see. I both love and don't love their full-length debut, A Strange Education, and I'll tell you why. It's catchy as all get out, and shows great talent, especially in the solid vocal ability and range. But it's also a little too derivative, a little too '80s. I want to know that they're capable of forging their own sound—and after tonight's show, I'm sure. The Cinematics are ones to watch, to be certain. With a high-energy live show and a solid stage presence from four young, cute Scots, they could very well be the next Franz Ferdinand.

(In fact, the similiarities to their fellow Glaswegians goes far beyond sound and stage; I would venture to say that the members of The Cinematics have studied hairstylings and wardrobe at the School of Franz Ferdinand; see below:

live_cine_franz

But back to the concert. The band's sole misstep, in my opinion, was its choice of opener: a lackluster cover of Beck's "Sunday Sun" (I skip it every time it comes up on my iPod; their original material is so much better and more heartfelt). And despite singer/guitarist Scott Rinney's need to introduce every single song (and overuse the word "fantastic"—he must have uttered it four times through the band's 30-minute set…but who's counting?), their performance was solid and quite impressive. Not only does Rinney have a big voice, capable of soaring melodies, vocal accents, and impressive falsetto, but he's got a big mouth. Captivating to watch, really.

Adam Goemans' drums tonight were lung-crushingly loud (god bless earplugs), but somehow it fit. In fact, during the band's last number, the slowed-down charmer "Asleep at the Wheel," there was such a wall of sound and crashing melodies that I was amazed they were still just four; so great—and wondrous—was the noise that it seemed a full orchestra should have been present.

Highlights included the catchy-as-hell single "Break," title track "A Strange Education," and "Streets on Fire," which was preceded by an awesome teaser guitar line. Throughout the set, the interplay between Rinney and lead guitarist Ramsay Miller was impressive, as was the way bassist Ross Bonney owned the entirety of the stage (while still managing to pose artfully for the cameras and camera phones).

I left as their set concluded, The Bravery's drum kit an unanswered tease at the back of the stage. Despite my exhaustion, I was satisfied; I didn't need another helping of music tonight. The Cinematics had filled my needs perfectly. | Laura Hamlett

About Laura Hamlett 467 Articles
Laura Hamlett is the Managing Editor of PLAYBACK:stl. In a past life, she was also a music publicist and band manager. Besides music, books, and other forms of popular culture, she's a fan of the psychology behind true crime and violent criminals. Ask her about mass murder...if you dare.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply