Two Door Cinema Club are an Electropop/Indie Rock band from Bangor and Donaghadee, Northern Ireland who formed in 2007. They played a sold out show at Thekla in Bristol on March 9 and their sound is a curious blend of synth augmented melodies, not unlike Passion Pit, but with curiously shallower and limited lyrics.
Lyrically short songs but a much longer band name which was a bit of problem when the audience tried to express their unbridled enthusiasm. It was the end of the night and it was time for the encore. The band walked off stage and the crowd started calling out. ‘What are they saying?’ Ellie and I asked each other. Four more? Two more? Two door? I couldn’t tell but they nonchalantly walked back on stage and played their last two songs. The ones that sounded very similar to nearly all the other songs played that night. Catchy riffs, catchy hooks but no real depth and no real anything else. Some that perhaps stood out a little more were the three singles Something Good Can Work, I Can Talk and Undercover Martyn (look out for the Passion Pit remix).
I enjoyed Undercover Martyn and it’s the reason I bought the tickets in the first place but after a while I realised that the constant repetition began to get tiring very quickly. I started counting down the set list from song number five (eight to go, seven to go…).
The young crowd who seemed to know all the lyrics made me feel quite old and indeed most of the night was spent in grouchy old woman mode where Ellie and I argued and prayed for health and safety to prevail. The supporting act, the Citadels, had a bit of a frenzied and unstable-banter inspired lead singer. The music was a little more diverse and quite thoughtful but the activity on stage was accompanied by cans of red stripe and some bizarre antics.
Towards the end of their set, after the blue sequin-clad female vocalist let go of the microphone and headed back to her keyboard and flute, the male and predominantly lead, vocalist took it upon himself to get into a rock frame of mind. He stood on the speakers at the front of the stage, gyrated and stomped on the guitar lying on the ground and then proceeded, in his enthusiasm, to spill beer all over the electrical equipment and wires. I grimaced, I cringed and I uttered some shocked recriminations to Ellie. What could he possibly be thinking?
The Two Door Cinema Club were the very antithesis to their support led antics. The crew tidied up the stage and carefully dabbed away the offensive fluid. Instruments were placed, tested and retested. We nodded our approval at the tape that was used to fasten the cables down to the stage and the care taken with this young band was evident.
Once their catchy tunes began to be heard, the crowd started jostling and pushing and shoving. ‘I notice some vigorous dancing going on’ noted the lead singer in his soft Northern Irish accent. ‘Just keep it safe’ he admonished and it was a strange thing to hear from someone so much younger than me but probably older than the crowd.
Safety and caution seemed to be their motto and they didn’t venture too far out of their depth. From my vantage point on the balcony I kept getting drawn to a bright orange sign on the floor with the words ‘weak spot’ written in big bold letters.
In his excited dancing progress, Alex Trimble, the lead singer would occasionally step on it and I kept waiting for something to happen. Nothing special happened that night but their tendency to play it safe might be a weakness which gives way very soon. For now they are celebrating the release of their first album Tourist History (March 1) to much plaudit and acclaim from the young Skins watching audience. The music was pleasant and catchy enough to explain why the French record label Kitsune Music signed up this young band but the repetition became old quite quickly.