Giggs / Vaccines / Bo Ningen - Old Blue Last - Gigs - Reviews - Soundblab

Giggs / Vaccines / Bo Ningen - Old Blue Last

by Amy Baker Rating: Release Date:

Arriving at the Old Blue Last on Thursday night to discover that I would have to queue among a rabble of Vice readers to gain entry to the already full-to-the-rafters East London pub, I have to admit that after a full days work, I wasn't the most delighted. This was immediately rectified when my friend handed me a can of Scrumpy cider and ordered me to "Get in the spirit of things", which I immediately did. My mood was even further lifted when I was handed drinks tokens on entry. Headache gone.

The first act to hit the stage to promote were Japanese rockers Bo Ningen. Although not a fan of thrash rock, I could appreciate some catchy hooks although, to me, their crazily long hair and the intense noises they were forcing from their guitars made me think that the girl from Ring who lives in the well had crawled out of the TV, recruited two of her mates and crawled onto the stage downstairs in the Old Blue Last. I got the impression that it wouldn't have taken much to get the already heavily inebriated crowd going but somehow Bo Ningen just didn't manage it.

The much-hyped Vaccines were next to take to the stage. After studying the running order, I was disappointed to discover that all acts would be only performing half-hour sets. I imagine this was to allow DJs to bang out the latest offerings from Kanye and co. Personally, I would have preferred a longer set. The posh-rockers took to the stage 10 minutes late, allowing impatient fans only about 17 minutes of fun. What we got was a short, frantic replay of the album What Did You Expect from The Vaccines, basically song for song. They opened with 'Wreckin' Bar (Ra Ra Ra)', followed closely by 'If You Wanna' and 'Lack of Understanding'. It was at this stage that it became clear they weren't going to mix things up from the album's running order. Nevertheless, the whole place sang along as they rushed through 'Norgaard' and Post Break-Up Sex' before leaving as fast as they had arrived. The Vaccines have been getting quite a lot of stick recently for not living up to the hype. I completely disagree. They sounded as tight as they do on the album and Justin Young's gravely vocals were even more enjoyable in the intimate venue.

South London smiley grime artist Giggs was next to take to the stage - along with what seemed like all of his mates who were keen to enjoy their piece of the limelight. Although partial to a spot of grime, I was reluctant to agree with the hype that Giggs is the 'saviour of UK hip hop' and for the record, although there is no denying that he got the crowd going, I'm still not convinced. Kicking off proceedings with 'Game Over' certainly got the crowd excited and he followed it up with party tracks Look What the Cat Dragged in' and 'Get Your Money Up'. His relaxed drawl over a grimey party beat was just what the boozed-up crowd were asking for and when he ended his set with 'My Charlie' the calls for "One more tune" came as no surprise.

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Shame Bo Ningen didn't go down well. I'd love to see them live.

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