Note: Couldn’t find the banner for 8th 🙂
I first saw “ Future of the Left “ at the closing event for the Coronet Theatre in Elephant and Castle in December 2017 and was duly impressed with the energy and musicianship ,especially the driving bass lines. In the live setting there duelling guitars and bass lines draw comparisons with “Gang of Four” or “Rage Against the Machine”. Not a bad thing I would say. Lyrically they have something to say as you would imagine but there is very often underlying humour which I would say actually gives the songs greater longevity as opposed to being a pure dialectic rant, which could get old far more quickly and dated.
This was there second night at the Lexington in celebration of the Venues 10th Anniversary. Have to say I thought it had been a music venue forever. An intimate venue I was intrigued at how they would sound. The bass wasn’t quite as powerful as my last listening but they entertained an enthusiastic audience with 19 songs, drawn from numerous albums with a couple from upcoming new album “Christian Fitness”.
They played for approximately 80 minutes. Despite being around since 2006 they sound pretty fresh to my ears and attacked all songs with 100% enthusiasm. Despite maintaining a level of rawness in the live performance, having read a little about the band, they definitely have a level of perfectionism bubbling below the surface that belies this and is attributed to the vison of vocalist Andy Falkous.
In the current political landscape it’s interesting to consider their appeal based on the fact that they are clearly not apolitical. The crowd was pretty mixed from student types through to the smattering of fat white old blokes but perhaps the left leaning nature of the band will assist rather than hinder in the UK’s brave new political world.
Support was provided by “Right Hand, Left Hand” also from Wales who are clearly very competent multi-instrumentalists. But you can probably sense a” but” here in my tone as I am slightly giving faint praise.
I was talking to a marketing specialist this week who said to me that “you need to decide what market you’re going for and then what benefits and individual differentiation you bring to that market”. Unfortunately the same rules really apply in music and other than enjoying themselves (which I think is a justifiable end game and shouldn’t be underestimated) it wasn’t clear what they wanted to say. That was partly because their set was very instrumental biased with limited vocals.
This is my opinion and accept that to others ears this may have absolutely hit the spot and been the modern version of the old Punk D.I.Y ethic. But just a bit too much technology for me.
Overall a great venue, good entertainment and a headliner that left the audience wanting more. “Future of the Left “are an underrated and underappreciated band, they still have plenty of fire and play a high energy set. Look forward to the next time.
Set List (courtesy of Set list .com)
The Lord Hates a Coward
My Gymnastic Past
The Limits of Battleships
Failed Olympic Bid
Eating for None
You Should Be Ashamed, Seamus
Stand By Your Manatee
Gareth Brown Says
How to Spot a Record Company
French Lessons / Singing of the Bonesaws / Lapsed Catholics / Lightsabre Cocksucking Blues
Three additional songs were unknown from the new album.