Metronomy - The Ritz, Manchester
The Ritz, declares frontman Joe Mount, is the fanciest Manchester venue Metronomy have ever played. This veneer of glamour may be harder to detect from down among the hoi polloi, but the sky-inspired backdrop and all-white stage set instills a more heavenly ambiance.
We've not had that much time to digest new album Love Letters yet; unphased by such matters, they lead with a trio of freshly minted songs, with single 'Love Letters' enough to get the crowd moving. Back on more familiar ground, ‘The Look’ from 2011's The English Riviera has its harmonious ‘doo-wops’ replaced with high energy synth, heading up a Manchester-pleasing set of new stuff and oldies (but goodies). Drummer Anna Prior fills in for Roxanne Clifford’s guest vocals on ‘Everything Goes My Way’, and it's notable the ease with which they replicate - and enhance - the recorded versions in the live environment. Funkier than you might imagine, even the instrumental 'Boy Racer' gets the booties shakin'.
Metronomy look pleasantly surprised at the positive response. For the encore, they return to the stage one by one, building up slowly. It's a metaphor for their rise: steady, if never spectacular, yet it bodes well for the longer game. After a final three songs, they leave to ‘go clubbing'. Oh, to have their energy!