Monday, 22 December 2014

Top 10 Music Performances of 2014

Well this is new for me! Every year I see so many awesome bands and so many memorable sets that this year I have decided that I should make a note of them right here on this very film blog. Yes I know it's a film blog but that doesn't mean that I can't step out of my comfort every once in a while does it?

I saw 27 artists/acts/music performers/whatever you call them this year. Usually I'd just say 'bands' but as part of my trying to cheer up a little, I've tried to spread my music interests to stuff apart from mopey teen angst stuff, especially seeing as I'm now well into my 30s. That means at Reading Festival, which is slowly but surely being taken over by electronic music, I spent some time in the dance arena and elsewhere checking out the bass.

All of these 27 artists were seen at just four different gigs this year. First up I saw Zebrahead, Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish in London in February. Then I saw a whopping 19 acts over three days of the Reading Festival in August, then I saw Rise Against and Pennywise in London in November and finally I saw Capdown, The Skints and Me First and the Gimme Gimmes in December.

The 19 acts I saw at Reading were: (deep breath) Darlia, Deaf Havana, Twin Atlantic, Jimmy Eat World, Paramore, Queens of the Stone Age, Royal Blood, Andy C, Pendulum, Arctic Monkeys, Nero, Papa Roach, The Flatliners, The Wilhelm Scream, The Wonder Years, You Me At Six, Macklemore and Ryan Lewis, Mayday Parade and finally Blink 182.

I had such a good time seeing so many of these but as I've called this post my 'top 10 music performances of 2014', I'm committed now to making a definitive list. So here goes:

10. Papa Roach (I LOVE these guys and have seen them almost every time they come to the UK but as this was the main stage at Reading, it wasn't that personal and intimate and I wasn't overwhelmed by a couple of their new songs).

9. Zebrahead (These guys are fun pop-punk but not the best at singing live)

8. Jimmy Eat World (Played the entire Futures album from start to finish. I wasn't even familiar with most of the songs but it felt special and I've since grown to really like the album.)

7. Reel Big Fish (These guys were a little moody but the music is infectious and a hell of a lot of fun.)

6. Nero (Seeing these guys do their stuff headlining the Radio 1 stage while the guy from the Arctic Monkeys posed and played with his hair on main stage while seemingly pretending to be Elvis was a revelation. We left Arctic Monkeys and walked towards the tent where Nero were pumping out their bass and it was like stepping into the future. Spectacular.

5. Darlia (These guys want to be Nirvana so badly and they're not doing too bad a job so far. Wicked set, climaxing with a bit of good old guitar smashing).

4. Royal Blood (Two guys, a bass guitar and a set of drums. These guys are smashing it, even if I'm getting a little tired of hearing them EVERY time I turn on the radio.)

3. Twin Atlantic (Seen them a couple of times before but never really SEEN them if you get what I mean maaaaan. They have some truly epic tunes and a lot of heart. Also the best accent to sing along to at the top of your voice.)

2. Less Than Jake (again, seen them loads of times but they are so much fun and their classics are classic and their new songs were also the bomb. A great set from one of the most fun ska punk bands around.)

1. Rise Against (Probably one of the bands I've seen most in my life since seeing them three times in 2005. Love them to bits. Every song is a blinder, the mosh pit is crazy and I got to go with my old buddy from Australia. Awesome band. Awesome set. Awesome times.)

So that was my 2014 in live music. How was yours? Anyone else see any of these sets? What did I miss?

More 2014 lists at I Love That Film:

Best Books I Read in 2014

TV in 2014

Top 10 Blockbusters of 2014

Top 10 Best True Stories of 2014