Friday, January 27, 2006

Hard-Fi @ the Middle East - 16 Jan 2006

I saw Hard-Fi as an FNX card free show at the Middle East downstairs on Monday the 16th.

Hard-Fi site Hard-Fi Myspace

Hard-Fi have been constantly playing in my subconscious for about a year. While I was working at the Joslin Diabetes Center, I needed some tunes to get by, and I eventually tuned to the wonderful saviour-of-my-existence: BBC 6 Music (over the internet).

Hard-Fi had just begun their run of solid singles in the UK with "Cash Machine". Its a song I enjoy a lot now. At first I thought it was pretty hokey; like this was an indie band acting as boy band. but there was an earnestness at play. The song is pretty much about how you work for little money and next thing you know, its gone. Simple, and the song includes melodica backing (its like a little keyboard you blow into, sounds like a harmonica).

Then there was another single "Tied Up Too Tight", about how the "cognoscenti don't like us" as they blast out of the suburbs into London. fairly rockin.

What finally hit me was their single "Hard to Beat". Another great pop song that rocks. I find it utterly irresistable. Great beat, great urgency. Its all about how the lead singer fancies this lady and how they'll make a big splash when they're together. "Can you feel it? Rockin the city".

As for the show, they delivered their album "Stars of CCTV" (CCTV for Americans means 'closed-circuit TV', the UK is covered in security cameras recording your drunken actions on the street, making you the "star" of CCTV). As far as musicianship goes, they were tight and pretty close to the record.

The frontman Richard Archer gave the crowd quite a performance himself as a charismatic leader. he held the crowd in full attention with his antics. you could giggle at his melodica bursts, but it was done with such enthusiasm that you had to admit it works.

Also enjoyable was a vigorous dub-rock rendition of the White Stripes' "Seven Nation Army". yes, with melodica.

Great performance. Hope to see some more animated British bands soon.

Though now that i said that, i'm sad that i won't actually get to see THE animated british band The Gorillaz, as they will be performing at the Coachella Festival a little after my trip to retrieve the beautiful Carolyn from the clutches of the UK and Spain. Damn Cash Machine.


linzi said...

Dear Mister Kurian,

Have you ever considered reviewing music for, oh say, people? You do it anyways, why not trying getting paid for it, huh huh?

mel said...

dear Mister I'm-not-going-to-put-your-last-name-online-so-that-the-crazies-will-find-you-unless-they-already-have,

Yes, I believe we've been telling you that for the past 7 years.


linzi said...

ummm... oops. Did i blow his cover, like, forever? atleast i didn't tell people the name he was given at birth...

Jasonic said...


so. the reason i've never written professionally is because my writing is not good. merely talking about and applauding my favorite bands is more of a fan thing. what i'm trying to do here is get better and more comfortable with writing my opinions. and who knows?

tho, another unfortunate side to this whole blogging thing is that there are approximately 31042 BILLION music blogs out there. ones that review. ones that give free music files. people who have inside scoops. people with good writing skills who have challenged themselves. maybe i'll join them one day.

and for the record i recently gave away my last name in my blogger profile anyway. i was looking to see what kids from high school were doing, and i realized i would like it if someone who knew me bothered to see how i turned out.

mel said...

well then, I guess it was the mom in me worrying about J putting his lastnameonlinesothatthecrazieswillfindyouunlesstheyalreadyhave. Apparently you ENJOY the crazies, and who am I to deny you of my company? ;)

Well, I still think your writing kicks ass and I'm glad you're blogging.

Logan said...

Hard-fi just lost both the Best British Rock Act and Best British Group "Brit" awards... in both cases to the Kaiser Chiefs.

And I swear if I hear that goddamn James Blunt song one more time I'm going to beat him to death with Kanye West's ego.