[LIVE REVIEW] The Naked and Famous, The Chain Gang of 1974, and White Arrows at The Masquerade, 10/24/11

Review and Photos by Peterson Worrell

 

The Naked and Famous

I’m not one for shows at the Masquerade to be honest.  I’ve always found that Heaven is too big for my liking, while Hell often times gets far too crowded and has an odd layout.  That said, they do consistently draw quality bands and just about every show I’ve been to there, I’ve been pleased with.  The most recent show I saw there was no different.  I arrived at the venue a bit late and was surprised by the crowd that had already packed in front of the stage.  Admittedly, I’m used to getting to shows 30 minutes after the promoted time and still being early but this time I walked in about half way through the set of the first band, White Arrows.  After hearing about 2 songs by them, I really regretted missing the first half of their set.  White Arrows style is a bit hard to pin down; the best description I can give is a fusion of psych and tropical rock similar to local Atlanta artists Mermaids.  They manage to combine these genres into a pop like, danceable style that seemed to go over really well with the crowd.

While their style isn’t exactly new with the influx of electronic rock acts that have been coming out lately, they display solid skills and great energy on stage.  However, what I really liked most about the band was their down to Earth attitude.  I believe they mentioned that this was their first time in Atlanta and they actually took time in between their songs to have the house lights turned on so they could take a quick picture of the crowd to commemorate the occasion.  One of the best qualities in a band to me is the ability to have fun on stage and White Arrows definitely has this trait down.  Overall, while they’re not a ground breaking band, I definitely feel like they’re a band to check out, especially if you’re into the dance-rock scene.

The second band to take the stage was The Chain Gang of 1974.  The first thing I noticed about the band was the variety of different fashion styles on stage at the time ranging from the singer’s New Wave-esque look to the keyboardist’s semi-casual look, complete with blazer and slacks.  Once the band actually started to play, the New Wave similarities continued.  If I had to compare the band to another band that I’m familiar with, I’d have to say they sounded a bit like Tears for Fears.  The tracks they played sounded as if they could have come right out of the 80’s, which is actually a bit refreshing.  If you’re looking for an act that brings the retro feel of the 80’s together with stellar energy, The Chain Gang of 1974 is worth keeping an eye out for.

By the time the last band, The Naked and Famous, took the stage, the crowd was already wound up from the last two bands.  The energy level was already high, but The Naked and Famous seemed determined to take it over the top.  Two songs into their set and I found that the majority of the crowd was either dancing, shouting out lyrics, clapping which, from what I’ve seen, isn’t the easiest tasks to do nowadays.  Their ethereal, dream-pop like vocals matched up great with their electro-rock sound to make for a stellar combo.  My biggest regret of the night is not being able to stick around for their entire set.  Should any of these bands make their way to your city, I’d definitely recommend checking them out.

More photos after the jump.

White Arrows

The Chain Gang of 1974

The Naked and Famous

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