Chvrches launch new album Love Is Dead at House of Vans
Chvrches presented their new album Love Is Dead at an exclusive show in London. The event, which took place at House of Vans – and was broadcasted globally on YouTube – was their first London appearance in over two years and the only one until 2019.
The set began with Get Out, the lead single from the band’s latest record. Unfortunately, the sound mix was the most disastrous this reviewer has ever come across at any professional – and also non-professional – concert. Technical issues happen during live shows, but the complete lack of balance between the volume of the voice and the level of each instrument made it impossible – if not irritating – to enjoy the performance. It was also particularly problematic for an act whose new album’s greatest achievement lies in the colourful, 80s-infused soundscapes and the perfect match with Lauren Mayberry’s ethereal yet sharp vocals.
Forever and Never Say Die were the most convincing from Love Is Dead; the former is clearly set to become one of Chvrches’ new anthems. They also played Miracle – which shares not only the title with a song from Hurts, but also an unusually similar backing choir – and the uplifting Graffiti. It should be said, though, that the three-piece’s lyrics are now way behind compared to the evolution of their sound. The banality of words such as “we wrote our names along the bathroom walls / graffitiing our hearts across the stalls” and “I always regret the night I told you I would hate you ’til forever” does not fit with a band whose average age exceeds 35 years. The mismatch is not only lyrical; the frontwoman sported a Yeah Yeah Yeahs T-shirt stating “Cool kids belong together” and an overall child-like look which only add to the jarring contrast.
The 17-song set featured most of Chvrches’ hits, from Gun to Leave a Trace and The Mother We Share. Halfway through the performance, Martin Doherty took lead vocals on God’s Plan and Under the Tide, shifting the mood completely and reminding the audience what actually makes Chvrches special: Mayberry’s voice. The night ended with Clearest Blue and the hope that next time the technical side of the concert will match the undeniable quality of the music.
Filippo L’Astorina, the Editor
Photos: Filippo L’Astorina
For further information and future events visit Chvrches’ website here.
Watch the concert entirely here: