posted on June 02, 2011 13:53
Review Snapshot: Not to worry, Pains of Being Pure at Heart, it's not your fault. I don't think that the combined bill of Obama, the Queen of England, Jedward and a large hadron collider could have breathed life into the Button Factory on Wednesday night. Tough crowd.
The CLUAS Verdict? 5 out of 10
Full Review: The Pains of Being Pure at Heart were in Dublin this week for their first headline gig in Ireland, having visited these shores only once before as support to The Wedding Present back in 2008. And with their energetic, chorus driven indie-pop, I was expecting quite an atmosphere. However, like a certain American preacher whose recent doomsday predictions went tits up, I was left sorely disappointed.
I missed the support act through a series of unfortunate events, namely my finishing work later than I had expected and also finding a nearby pub that were serving two euro pints. But I made my way there sometime before nine to find the Button Factory comfortably crowded and took up a position near the bar. When the Brooklyn troupe wielding the most emo name in modern music made their way to the stage they were greeted not by whoops or cheers (not many anyway), but rather by half-hearted applause which turned quickly into silent judgement.
Kicking off with the title-track of their second album, 'Belong', the band seemed unaffected by their lacklustre welcome and powered through the first few songs of the set with great intensity. However despite churning out established tracks like 'A Teenager in Love' and 'Heart In Your Heartbreak' the crowd never really got going. When 'Young Adult Friction' fell to a similarly muted response, we knew there was something wrong.
What could have caused such untypical coldness from an Irish audience? Maybe a case of early summer lethargy? Perhaps we were all puckered out from the welcomes afforded to the too cool for school president of the world and the 'not as much of a bitch as we initially thought' Queen? Whatever the case, the Cead Mile Failte was found desperately lacking.
The crowd were even treated to an intimate version of 'Contender' from the band's debut album played alone by front man Kip Berman. It's a brave man that confronts an unenthused crowd, armed with only a guiter and a melody. The payoff must have been considerably less than he had expected.
They finished the night on an old favourite 'Everything With You' and were gone with as little fan fare as they had arrived. And I left the Temple Bar venue feeling that it just wasn't the gig that it might have been. Through no fault of the band, the evening had been a bit a little disheartening. Gig goers, get your act together.