Live Review: Metronomy with Class Actress at Rock ‘n’ Roll Hotel, Washington, DC – 22nd October 2011

By on Tuesday, 25th October 2011 at 2:00 pm

Sometimes your mates come through with new music suggestions. When I had the blues many moons ago (guy trouble), Nick of Appomattox suggested Metronomy would cheer me up in a pinch. At the time I didn’t really get it: to be fair, it wasn’t until ‘The English Riviera’ this year that I took a closer look at Joseph Mount and his band. They came to Washington the second time in over 4 years this past Saturday and I was quite proud that my town had sold out the Rock ‘n’ Roll Hotel.

The opener was Class Actress, an American electronic duo from Brooklyn. With a trenchcoat, white shirt and long dark hair, singer Elizabeth Harper was a dead ringer for Tiffany. Seeing that she would wail occasionally against a dance beat, the music was pretty similar too to ’80s new wave. The music was fine but not particularly unique or inspiring: it could have been any singer, male or female, singing along to the good beats.

When I first read about Metronomy on the Web, everything referred to Metronomy being Joseph Mount’s own ‘band’. So I kind of assumed the Metronomy live show would be like a Morrissey gig: the frontman plus a talented but downplayed cast of characters. How wrong I was. Mount was smart to realise early on that he would never be a pin-up, so he lets loose on the kind of falsettos that are generally not advised for men unless they want to be made fun. But forget that: check in your reservations at the door for a Metronomy gig, because you’re in for a night of dancing.

In the live environment he utilises the strengths of his bandmates and Metronomy as a whole is definitely greater than the sum of its parts. Oscar Cash gets saxophone and electric clarinet solos and Mount is quick to acknowledge him; when he’s not playing one of several instruments, Cash is doing Peter Crouch proud with his version of the Robot. Hilarious. Drummer Anna Prior stands in for Veronica Falls’ singer Roxanne Clifford on the band’s most recent single, ‘Everything Goes My Way’ and she does a great job. ‘She Wants’ followed by ‘The Bay’ is a one-two punch of heaving beat goodness. And speaking of goodness, my goodness: I had no idea Washington would take ‘Radio Ladio’ and throw it back to this band with such gusto, voices shouting back the chorus. Joseph Mount did look a bit bashful when he said thank you to everyone for making the trek out to H Street to see them on a Saturday night, but for us, it was totally worth it.


After the cut: set list and more photos.

Metronomy Set List:
We Broke Free
Love Underlined
Back on the Motorway
She Wants
The Boy
You Could Easily Have Me
The End of You Too
The Look
A Thing for Me
On Dancefloors
Some Written
Everything Goes My Way
Radio Ladio

Metronomy Photos:


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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

We love music that has its heart on its sleeve, tells a story, swims around our head all day or makes us dance like no-one's watching.

TGTF was edited by Mary Chang, based in Washington, DC.

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