Here’s a question for rock music scholars: Was it the sharp rise in popularity of The White Stripes that imposed the guitar-drums power duo as a dominant force in modern indie rock or is this another sign of the plummeting world economy and the subsequent downsizing of everything? One thing is certain though; there are many unemployed bass players out there and as long as bands like Japandroids are capable of such mind-blowing shows like the one we witnessed on Wednesday, the future of the low end in modern rock and its many garage - blues - punk offshoots remains uncertain.
With two excellent albums, one collection and several singles in their discography so far, Japandroids were already high in my personal hierarchy of guitar-drums duos. After their marathon, 110-minute set at An Club which included a large portion of this discography, the band certainly cemented its place near the top of this rapidly increasing list.
The extended length of this particular show was down to the band’s desire to give their Greek fans something extra at their first-ever Athens show. As a result, we had the opportunity to enjoy not only the eight tracks on the band’s most recent LP, "Celebration Rock", but a large portion of their back catalog as well, including tracks from their very first days as a band, like their cover of McLusky’s "To Hell With Good Intentions". All the highlights from their debut album "Post-Nothing" were also present in their set as well, including my favorites "Young Hearts Spark Fire" and "Wet Hair". Japandroids’ rock celebration ended with an explosive rendition of The Gun Club’s "For the Love of Ivy", injecting drunken energy to a cherished classic.
|Japandroids, live @ An Club (Oct. 24, 2012)|
The night opened with a brief set by another noisy guitar-drums duo, The Noise Figures. The new band, which consists of George Nikas from Zebra Tracks (vocals, drums) and Stamos Babaris from Keyser Soze (guitar), presented their debut EP "Turn Off The Lights" (listen here) with which they pledge allegiance to The Black Keys’ garage-blues sound. The guitar-drums gospel keeps spreading!
|The Noise Figures, live @ An Club (Oct. 24, 2012)|
Japandroids - To Hell With Good Intentions, live @ An Club
Japandroids - The Nights of Wine and Roses, live @ An Club