Scouting for Girls at Shepherd’s Bush Empire
Since their first tour back in 2008, Scouting for Girls have been playing for audiences throughout Europe. Last night the Shepherd’s Bush’s Empire hosted the London leg of their UK tour promoting their newest release, Still Thinking About You.
As the lights faded and the anticipatory hush descended over the audience, the theme from Superman, composed by John Williams, began to play. Anyone used to the quirky stylings of Scouting for Girls would expect nothing less than this unorthodox beginning and as they launched into one of their new songs, Bad Superman, it really seemed like their happy-go-lucky vibe, which made their performances unique and contributed towards their Brit nomination for “British Live Act” in 2009, was alive and well.
However, this high-energy start betrayed what immediately followed. From the beginning of Heartbeat, one of their most popular songs, there was a feeling of staleness that continued as they consecutively brought out all of the hits from their record-breaking first album, Scouting for Girls. There was no crowd interaction during the first five songs and they seemed to be playing tracks like as I Wish I Was James Bond and Elvis Ain’t Dead because they felt that it was expected of them.
It was not until frontman Roy Stride picked up his acoustic guitar for the first time that the concert started to feel more natural. He looked out over the audience and asked each member to turn to the person with whom they had attended the concert and say “I love you”. The Empire’s mood lifted notably with this simple request and the band launched into one of their newer releases, Millionaire. They looked at home on stage as the audience bounced along to this heartwarming tune about the state of infatuation that renders money irrelevant.
The fresh wave of energy buzzing around the room held strong for the remainder of the performance. Scouting for Girls played high-octane songs relentlessly until they mercifully gave us one final chorus of Home before leaving.
After the audience had milled around for a few moments, the band came back out, dressed in Christmas jumpers, and played Christmas in the Air, a truthful and honest song about that one night every year when the roads are closed and your hometown feels magical. There was definitely “a little bit of Christmas in the air”.
Photos: Guifré de Peray
For further information about Scouting for Girls and future events visit here.