15 songs. 10 pounds. 5 men. 1 tour. Spector bring their stunning indie rock to Clwb Ifor Bach.
Spector’s ‘Tenner Tour’, based on both the monetary value and the title of their upcoming single, seems to have the core values of great music, intimate venues, and affordable price. The tour is simply a celebration of the love of live music. Featuring a slightly different set list each night, every venue witnessed a unique night of superb entertainment.
The Rhythm Method kick-started the night; the pair of London lads had the audience chuckling along to their unique and witty take on life, love and their local pub. Reminiscent of a less intense, more playful version of Slaves, the pop duo perfectly ensured that the crowd were ready to dance and let go of any worries they may have.
Any band beginning a set with the phrase “We’re pleased to be back on Welsh soil” was always going to be on to a winner in Cardiff’s Clwb Ifor Bach, but by kicking off with old favourite ‘Never Fade Away’, it took Spector under a minute to completely win the crowd over.
Right from the get-go, it is blindingly obvious why Spector has such a devoted fan following. Virtually nothing creates a better live atmosphere than a band who clearly love playing their music as much as their fans love listening to it. Dressed entirely in black and white, with Fred Macpherson sporting a newly shaved head, and Thomas Shickle modelling bleached white hair, the band’s image is the epitome of indie rock.
Fred Macpherson’s often borderline manic stage presence is contagious, similar to a hyperactive Ian Curtis. He perfectly commands the whole audience, allowing them to immerse themselves completely in his intense and entrancing performance style. Combined with heart-stopping basslines, intricate guitar riffs, racing drums and the perfect amount of synth, the quintet create a truly electrifying live environment.
A heavier live sound brought a new dimension to the usually light-hearted indie rock, and a new perspective to each of the songs. The perfect mixture of classic tracks interspersed with new material (including one song that had only been performed once before) enabled the crowd to get lost in the music alongside the band.
It’s always a pleasant surprise to see that a band has declined the offer of barriers in a more intimate venue, as it allows a much more personal performance. This is an area in which Spector excels. From snapchatting on fan’s phones to inviting people to jump on stage in various songs, this performance style allows fans to feel almost as if they are the sixth member of the ensemble. Ending with firm fan favourite ‘All The Sad Young Men’, the audience were encouraged to pull apart, almost forming an aisle in which Macpherson could perform and dance with the crowd.
With witty, intelligent, lyrics and boundless energy and passion, Spector are a band who deserve far more recognition than they are currently receiving, but appear to be ecstatic if even one person is moved by their music. This is perhaps what makes them such a phenomenal live act.
This Spector article was written by Bethan Brace, a GIGsoup contributor. Edited by Natalie Whitehouse.