TRIBES O2SHEPHERDS BUSH EMPIRE 27th April 2012
The UK scene circa 2012 has got off to a sluggish start with only a few special bands making their mark on the greater good. Tribes are indeed one of the special ones, they are one of the few bands that have escalated their way up from the indie crowd and are now, in my opinion, one of the best bands currently on the scene at the moment. The show tonight at Shepherds Bush Empire was packed from the start and when you consider that there were two support bands to sit through before the main attraction you'd be forgiven for thinking that the venue would be half empty at the early stages of the evening.
Tribes have an already fiercely loyal fan base that know every lyric, chorus and song from the get go. Tonight's set started with 'Whenever' from their 'Baby' album and then straight into fan favourite 'Girlfriend' from their early days 'We Were Children' EP. Each song barely stretches past the 3 minute mark but after all this is rock and roll and not orchestral progressive jazz so in true Ramones style we of the iPOD and fast food generation want things quick, fast and to the point and Tribes deliver on all points. Although when you read the 'brudda's' comparison don't mistake Tribes for a head down fast punk band, their songs are extremely well crafted slices of power pop played with swagger and conviction.
The set was mainly compiled of songs from their debut album as you'd expect, with tracks such as 'Sappho', 'Corner Of An English Field', 'Himalaya' and 'Nightdriving' all making appearances early on. Filling the remainder of the set were many songs from their earlier EP's including the crowd storming 'Not So Pretty' from the late 2011 'When My Day Comes' as well as their first encore song 'Coming of Age', another track harvested from their first EP 'We Were Children'. The group looked very much at home and at ease taking the headline spot, a position I would expect them to be fulfilling more frequently in the near future, as well as being one of the festival favourites this summer.
In a time where progression in indie music seems to simply mean moody faces, brogues with no socks and synths, Tribes are bringing songwriting and pop influences back and draining them through their own personal brand of rock and roll music... and from a fans point of view what more can you ask for?
originally on '405'
photo: Jodie Meggs