Feeling a bit under the weather on Friday night, but figuring I needed to get the hell out of the house, I decided to go walk the entire ten minutes to ULU to check out two of the UKís biggest new hopes, Hope Of The States and Razorlight. North Londonís Razorlight were up first and the many in the house were there early to catch sight of the quartet tipped for great things. Sounding like an amalgamation of many of the late ë70s NYC bands, Razorlight combine punk and post-punk art-school rock with great results. Bits of Television, Patti Smith, Talking Heads and even The Libertines with less Clash or Smiths
Chichesterís Hope of The States were up next and I had no idea what to expect, having never heard them. After hearing them, all I could say was ìwow.î Imagine Godspeed You Black Emperor meets Mercury Rev meets Sigur Ros and youíd be on the right track. A six-piece in matching Civil War-era jackets, HOTS rock electric guitars, acoustic guitars, electric violin, drums and keyboards, providing crazy soundscapes and psychedelic jaunts to places heretofore unseen, but with a pop flair and a likeable frontman in Sam Herlihy. Pair that with an ever-present visual assault of war images and bits from their amazing animated video for their first single, ìEnemies/Friends,î and HOTS are an act you canít take your eyes off of or stop listening to. Itís been a long time since I was wowed by a band I hadnít heard before, but Hope Of The States did it. Now itís up to them to see if they can become more than just the Hope anytime soon, turning those dreams into reality. We shall see. They are definitely on the right track. Big, big thanks to Natalie Nissim and her masterful last-minute wrangling to obtain my ticket!