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Live Review: VV Brown at DC9, Washington DC – 19 February 2010

By on Monday, 22nd February 2010 at 2:00 pm

As we walked up the stairs to the main floor of DC9, the loud booming of Editors’ synthtastic ‘Papillon’ greeted us. I could tell this was going to be one great night. To be fair, Liberation Dance Party is always full of English electropop, but this time, VV Brown was in the house. To be honest, I wasn’t sure how many people in Washington knew who she was or what songs she was famous for; a lot of people go to Liberation for the open bar and to socialise, not necessarily dance or pay attention to a live act, if there is one. But I was proud of my D.C brethren for selling out DC9 and for the amazing, raucous reception they gave Brown and her band, and deservedly so for their short but high energy set.

VV Brown is one gorgeous woman, now joining Twiggy and Danii Minogue as a face on Marks and Spencer’s future adverts. So I’m not sure why she chose to obscure her face with a glittery, feathered mask. But I’ll admit it did lend an air of celebration to the festivities. Whether singing into her microphone or megaphone, beating on a conga drum, shaking a jingle stick, or playing keyboards, she looked right at home on the DC9 stage. She mainly played songs from her debut album, ‘Travelling Like the Light’, released last year, but there were some surprises. Brown asked the audience if they liked hip hop, and would it be okay if they played a cover of ‘Best I Ever Had’ by American star Drake. Was she kidding? This was Washington after all, chockful of urban radio stations. The fans ate this cover up.

‘Shark in the Water’, Brown’s upbeat love song that was supposed to be the closer of the night, became a massive crowd singalong, two boys next to me particularly keen on singing along to the chorus loudly and looking like they were going to make a move to jump on stage to touch Brown. When fans cheered for an encore, Brown and her band returned to the stage and played a song that she admitted really was an improvisation – I don’t think any of them had expected to receive such kudos from the audience. Her post-gig Tweets indicated that she was really touched by the reaction to her music and I’m glad: their set was absolutely blinding.

Editor’s note: this review would have been a lot more detailed, had an overzealous fan not snatched my notes in a fit of urgency at the end of the show. Mary Beth surmised that he grabbed the closest piece of paper – my notes – in order to get an autograph from VV. What an odd incident! Note to VV Brown fanatic: if you still have my notes, I’d like them back please. You have my contact information, please get in touch. Thank you.

On the train ride home, Mary Beth and I recalled the great songs that were played at the dance before VV Brown played, because it really was a night of English pop/dance epicness. Bill Spieler told me the complete list should go online at the dance party’s Web site sometime later this week, but I’ve included a list of the great songs we could remember. So after the cut: in addition to the usual photos, I’ve included a list of songs that were played on the night so you can have a feel for the epicness.

Continue reading Live Review: VV Brown at DC9, Washington DC – 19 February 2010


Mencap Little Noise Sessions / November 2009

By on Sunday, 8th November 2009 at 3:50 pm

Following on from the amazing lineups of the past two years, the Mencap Little Noise sessions are back again this November to raise more money for the mental disability charity.

The lineup is almost complete, with a string of pretty amazing performances scheduled. Personally, I’m most excited about Editors day, along with the pop-tastic Alexandra Burke, Mika and Newton Faulkner days – all of the shows have great talent and with the promise of special guests, I say you should hop on down to Union Chapel to check out some great music. Head on over to the Little Noise Sessions website for more answers to your questions.

The artists so far announced include:

Monday 16th November
The Maccabees
Bombay Bicycle Club
Everything Everything

Tuesday 17th November
Alexandra Burke
Marina and the Diamonds
VV Brown

Wednesday 18th November
Paloma Faith
Alex Gardner
Daisy Dares You

Thursday 19th November
Richard Hawley
I Blame Coco

Friday 20th November
The Blackout
Egyptian Hip Hop

Saturday 21st November
Taio Cruz
Tinchy Stryder

Sunday 22nd November
Florence and the Machine
Golden Silvers
Erik Hassle
Ellie Goulding

Monday 23rd November
David Gray
The Low Anthem
Lisa Mitchell

Tuesday 24th November
Newton Faulkner
Scouting for Girls
Little Comets


Single Review: VV Brown – Shark in the Water

By on Friday, 3rd July 2009 at 4:00 pm

VV Brown (cover)I was initially drew to VV Brown following on from her eye-catching and boundlessly energetic performance on coveted music show, Later with Jools Holland, way back in September of last year. With her 50s rockabilly-come-80s Grace Jones stylee, that amazing flat top fringe, and of course her swinging indie-pop to boot, VV Brown has since colourfully catapulted into the musical limelight.

Growing up amongst the records of Aretha Franklin and Ella Fitzergald, VV, real name Vanessa Brown, declined places from the likes of Oxford and King’s College London University in order to pursue her own musical passions. She purchased a guitar from a charity shop, removed all it’s strings but one and alas, her dream was born. With it’s catchy doo-wop hooks, ‘Crying Blood’, VV’s debut single, proved to be her big breakthrough hit. Since then, Brown has gone from strength to strength – most recently returning after her performance at Glastonbury Festival this weekend.

‘Shark in the Water’, VV’s upcoming single, is solid musical proof of this stylish lady’s ability to produce genuinely well-crafted songs. Starting off with kooky “Ooh ooh oohs” echoing the girl groups of the 60s, powerful Winehouse-esque vocals proceed to kick in as Brown sings “Sometimes I get my head in a divvy, feeling so lost, ticking you off.”. Then, in kicks the full-blown, emotionally epic chorus. “Baby, there’s a shark in the water!”, VV passionately sings to the backing of tippity tap percussion and retro brass. Basically – this soulful ballad has Radio 1 playlist stamped all over it.

Liking the sound of it? Well, why not watch the video to ‘Shark in the Water’, below


Pre-order a digital download of the single, which is released on Monday (July 6th), for just 50p over at 7Digital

VV Brown’s debut album, Travelling Like the Light, meanwhile, is set to be just released a few weeks later on July 20th. Pre-order the record now over at for just £6.98


Preview: Evolution Weekender 2009

By on Wednesday, 11th March 2009 at 12:00 pm

The Wombats - press shotWe all hear about the major summer festivals taking place across Blighty this ’09 – but here at There Goes The Fear, we like to bring you previews of those smaller, little known music events too! This week, we’d like to tell you about Evolution 2009. The festival, which started back in 2005, has grown rapidly in both size and popularity over the past few years and Evolution ’09 looks set to be the biggest and best yet!

The Newcastle-based festival is certainly ahead of the big name summer events in the calender stakes, taking place across the May bank holiday (Sunday 24th – Sunday 25th May). Still, the outdoor shows, which will take place along Gateshead’s quayside, are fully expected to attract a crowd of around 60,000. Judging by the line-up, we can see why!

Headliners confirmed so far include Dizzee Rascal, The Wombats (pictured right), Mystery Jets, The View and The Maccabees. Other impressive TGTF-favourites playing the Evolution Weekender include White Lies, Ladyhawke, Esser, Friendly Fires, Little Boots, Twisted Wheel, Marina and the Diamonds, Chapman Family, VV Brown and The Big Pink.

(And breathhhh….!) Impressive, don’t you agree? You can even catch headline electronica acts such as Boys Noize, Chase & Status Live and Kissy Sell Out over at the dance stage too, should something a little less guitar-based take your fancy.

If it couldn’t get any better, a weekend ticket for Evolution 2009 is priced at just £15! You can also grab a day ticket for £9.50 (note : only weekend tickets are on sale at the moment – day tickets go on sale Thursday!). Furthermore, a contribution of the ticket price will be donated to WaterAid. If you’d like to learn more about the festival and general ticket info, check out Evolution 2009’s website.


Live Review: The Ting Tings at Swindon Oasis – Thursday 5th March 2009

By on Friday, 6th March 2009 at 12:53 am

The Ting Tings' Katie @ Swindon Oasis (side)For many, The Ting Tings are a bit like Marmite. Some love ’em and think their songs are amazing. Others wish they’d just go away and burn in music purgatory along with Tokio Hotel, Pussycat Dolls and Paris Hilton. One thing we can’t deny, whatever your opinion of them, is that their album is full to the brim with catchy songs. We put aside our opinions for one night to check them out at Swindon’s Oasis, hoping to see just how good live they are.

Before The Ting Tings took to the stage, we had VV Brown and Ladyhawke. VV was 7th in the BBC’s Sound of 2009 annual poll so we were excited to check her out finally. She’s certainly got the voice to take her far with a great doo-wop 60’s style updated for the 00’s. However, whilst we can accept she’s definitely got talent and could get a crowd going, she’s not amazing enough for us to start raving and ranting about her amazingness here at TGTF.

Ladyhawke Live @ Swindon Oasis (side)One of the main reasons for attending tonight’s show was to catch Ladyhawke (pictured left). The 28 year old Kiwi has been on our radar for a while, and live she’s pretty ace. Banter between songs was kept to a minimum, however the music more than made up for it, with Paris is Burning turning into an 8 minute hypnotic full on funk fest. My Delirium seemed to be the only song the crowd knew, loosening up to yell the “Hey” of the chorus truly deafeningly.

Finally, Jules De Martino and Katie White (better known to many simply as The Ting Tings) arrived. The stage was scattered with all sorts of segments of keyboards and drums, and they got down to their business, opening with “We Walk”. With only one album under their belts, it’s hard to pull out of the bag a full set, considering their album only weighs in at 40 minutes. So, when you haven’t got many new songs (these were saved for the encore and were rather “meh” – no catchy choruses to be seen there), and not many B-sides, what to do to fill the time? Do an extended version of each song, that’s what, and pretend that you’re all “arty” with your video projections that are pretty mundane.

However, this shouldn’t detract from the fact that they have produced some of the simplest, best pop tunes of the past few years, with just about everyone knowing the words… even if they don’t want to. Live, they take the songs and spice ’em up a little with some pretty saxophonists and some nifty camera work and give you the chance to yell “Shut up and Let Me Go” at the top of your lungs witha few thousand other people. “Be The One” still sounds as amazing as it did the first time we heard it, and “That’s Not My Name” provides a show closer that many bands could only dream of.

Whatever your opinion of them, The Ting Tings have some amazingly catchy tunes. Live, they’re alright, however if you weren’t a fan before catching them live isn’t going to change your mind.

The Ting Tings play London’s Brixton Academy tonight, before embarking on a massive USA Tour then a European tour. After the jump are pictures and setlists.

Tickets for this event were kindly provided by Needtickets. logoTo find tickets, we suggest you try using Needtickets. offers you the most comprehensive ticket service in the UK. With one click you can search every nationwide online ticket agent and as a result you can find tickets for any live music event that can be booked online. Every ticket is 100% guaranteed as only offers links to official agents.

Continue reading Live Review: The Ting Tings at Swindon Oasis – Thursday 5th March 2009


Daily Roundup: 5th December

By on Friday, 5th December 2008 at 10:32 pm

I know, it’s been a while since I’ve done one of these posts.

First up, following on from Mike‘s posts about his tips for BBC’s Sound of 2009 competition (part 1 here, part 2 here), they’ve announced the longlist, which features no less than FIVEartists we have already featured on TGTF. The longlist sees Dan Black (who we featured here and here, and is pictured, right), Florence and the Machine (who we introduced here), La Roux (who we introduced here), White Lies (who we gave details of their tour here).  VV Brown has also been tipped in comments around the site too. On the longlist, they’re joined by:The Big Pink, Empire of the Sun, Frankmusik, Kid Cudi, Lady GaGa, Little Boots, Master Shortie, Mumford & Sons, Passion Pit and The Temper Trap.

Phew, there’s a lot of new music there! To conteract the newness of those, we bring you an oldie but a goldie: Tom Jones, but as you’ve never seen him before….


If that’s not some clever CGI, I don’t know what is…

Our friends over at Gig Junkie have pointed out that they have a lot of pretty amazing competitions going at the moment – if times are tight for you, pop on over and enter a competition or two – they have the chance to win tickets to see Kings of Leon, VIP style.

It seems rather a lot of you love Nickelback (pictured, right, and who incidentally are on tour next year… see my seamless link there?), so you might want to check out some exclusive tracks they played in the USA recently. I’ve had “Gotta Be Somebody” stuck in my head recently, and got to admit that slowly they’re getting under my skin!

Our friends over at Winston’s Zen have just posted their new monthy Zen list of all things great and free in MP3 land – check it out and have a listen.

Right, I think that’s it for tonight… I’m off to have a listen to those of the BBC Sound of 2009 longlist nominees that I don’t know much about, and Winston’s Zen’s new MP3s….


About Us

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.

All MP3s are posted with the permission of the artists or their representatives and are for sampling only. Like the music? Buy it.

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