London underground venue meets Gossip Girl fandom
I was very happy to have gotten the opportunity to see a band that I have been listening to for quite some time now. MOTHXR. They are a four-piece band from Brooklyn. My best friend told me about them after she saw them in Amsterdam when they were on tour as The Neighbourhood‘s supporting act. When I started listening to their record I didn’t realise that the brilliant vocals that I immediately fell in love with belonged to a person whose voice I should have recognised immediately: Gossip Girl‘s Penn Badgley. He is a brilliant actor who should be admired for his work in the famous US TV series as well as his other roles such as Michael in The Stepfather (2009), but that is beside the point. MOTHXR is an amazing band regardless of the members’ backgrounds. All the members are incredibly talented and I enjoyed Simon’s guitar solos in particular.
The gig was at Dingwalls which is a venue adjacent to Camden Lock. I had been there before, but not for any concerts. I must say that it is a very practical venue with a good atmosphere. You can have a pretty decent view even if you’re further back and with a 500 people capacity it is quite intimate. The show was not sold out, which meant that the venue was not too crowded, and that is always a bonus.
Another really nice aspect of this gig was that there were not one but two amazing supporting acts. I didn’t know either of them beforehand but after seeing them play I would highly recommend checking out both of them. Natives, a band from the New Forest (UK), were on right before MOTHXR and got everyone excited to see the main act whilst playing a great set themselves. The first band that was on that night was the Australian band Fairchild. I fell in love with their sound on the spot and I’m listening their song Neighbourhoods as I’m writing this post.
When it was finally time for the main act of the night everyone seemed to be in a really good mood. MOTHXR started their set with She Can’t Tell, which established the laid back atmosphere of the whole show. At one point the lead singer wished a member of the audience a happy 30th birthday and said that he is turning in 30 in two months. There is something about this band that is very intriguing to me though I can’t quite make out what it is. They seem open and down to earth, but at the same time they are quite mysterious. The show was better that I could have imagined and they played all songs off their record “Centerfold” including my absolute favourite: Impossisble. Their record itself is amazing, but seeing them live has made me like them even more, since it gave me a stronger connection with the music. When the fans were asking for “one last song” Penn came back out and said that they had no more songs to play, that they had played all the songs off their record already.
However, even though the atmosphere at the gig was quite good there was a lot of unnecessary pushing and shoving to get closer to the stage. Especially after hearing some of the comments from the people in the audience around me which mostly consisted of girls in their late teens made me realise that a fair share of the people were there to see Gossip Girl’s “lonely boy”, because he was their big crush when they were watching the show a few years back.
This whole situation brings me back to one of my favourite topics to rant about: Fangirls. I understand being obsessed with artists and their work but I find it really annoying when it gets to a point where the background or attractiveness of a certain band member overshadows their work and forces all the other members into the background. Bands consist of more than cute lead singers and I feel like that is something that many people often forget.
But in the end it doesn’t really matter why people were there. It was a decent audience and I think the band had a good time playing in London. The show made me fall in love with MOTHXR‘s music and Penn’s vocals even more and I will definitely go to see them again as soon as I get a chance. It was a great night.