Tokyo Police Club @ Audio, Brighton 10.11.10

Plugging the unique brand of mature foresight shrouded in youth and beauty, Tokyo Police Club descend upon us as meek teens with little or no grandeur in their stride. Picking up their instruments, we enter their comfort zone alongside them, though at times it seems as if there is no one in the room bar the quadruplet. This is where they belong. Heavily involved with every single track conceived, each one of them focuses one-hundred percent on getting the best out of it, delivering to our ears a vibrant cross-section of tracks old and new. Though it has to be said, none of these tracks ever feels dated, a key factor in the Club’s power.

Nov 10th, 2010 at Audio, Brighton / By Clementine Lloyd
Tokyo Police Club Opening with ‘Favourite Colour’, David Monk’s familiar voice spilling out familiar lyrics of camaraderie “Like KC & Jojo, like Sunny and Cher, you’re Tina but I’m not Ike”, the burst of pure energy hits you like a blind cyclist on speed. A good indication of things to come, and as we are treated to ‘The Nature Of The Experiment’ from their first LP it’s pretty clear this is a gig for the die-hard fans (pretty much the entirety of the audience then!).

As ‘Tesselate’ is unleashed and audience participation is called upon, the riotous side of the crowd come out in full force. Graham plays keys and we respond with hand claps in turn, a torrent of voices echoing lyrics means David’s dulcet tones are relinquished - we have it covered. It is tracks like ‘Bambi’ which really steal the show, whisperings of the title being heard the crowd over before finally coming to fruition. Like a synth bomb exploding, those on one side of the venue hurl themselves towards the other, taking others down in the process.

Cooling us down with ‘Hands Reversed’, and the sorrowful and sarcastic lyric “But when you feel like you’re a million then I feel like I’m a grand”, a much needed breather is taken before ‘Be Good’ crashes back into the tumult of good vibes, “It’s been a blast, but we have fought, waves of a samurai, peri-thrust, do or die”. Nearing the end, we are treated to the single ‘Wait Up (boots Of Danger)’, a beautiful pounding trip into a confused relationship, clearly as much a joy to play as to listen to! The best is saved for last as the first strains of ‘Your English Is Good’ flutter out over the PA - Greg’s brittle drum beat sharply delivered before the full weight of this most joyful track blasts a wall of sound at the crowd, leading with Josh’s epic riff.

Encoring with just one song, and a wonderful namecheck to themselves ‘Cheer It On’ acts is the unwilling full stop, “When you’re standing near, Tokyo Police Club, When you’re standing next to me, Tokyo Police Club”. It’s the best gimmick to end a riotous set like this! Highlighting their polarizing style in this generous set-list, combining maturity and foresight within their lyrics with an often ecstatically joyful resonance, David is wiser than his years suggest. This is where they differ from other artists in this field. It is only when you see them live, in all their youthful glory, that you realise how thoughtfully pioneering they are. Offering varied and alternate viewpoints into the psyche with lyrics such as “Your great-grandfather always said, wasting is an art, like the nights we spent in backs of cars” in ‘The End Of A Spark’ , whilst still keeping that high energy pace that is so involving, is not often achieved with such accuracy.