The Go! Team / Operator Please NME Freshers Tour - Astoria London

Operator Please,The Satin Peaches and The Go! Team have all been hitting University towns giving freshers an excuse to get drunk and dance about (as if they needed it!) as part of the NME Freshers Tour.
The London date was sightly different as the bands appeared at the Astoria smack bang in the centre of London, possibly bringing a more varied audience to the proceedings.
I had seen Operator Please at London's tiny Fly venue earlier this year and really warmed to their performance.The young five piece Australian band were even better this time around, with their bubblegum hyper punk pop sounds winning over the audience who had arrived early enough to catch their set.
This was the last date on the NME tour and the kids seemed to be making the most of it onstage, especially their keyboard player who jumped up and down and sang along to each song, even though she didn't seem to have a microphone!
I was suprised when the band rolled out their single - the truly wonderful "Just a song about ping pong" a few songs before the end as this was the track most audience members knew so I thought they'd be keeping it as a closing number.The band finished their set with a slower track that left me wanting a more explosive finale.
I'm sure there are great things ahead for the band though.They only formed a couple of years ago when lead singer Amandah Wilkinson put the band together for her schools "Battle of the bands" competition so it's amazing the progress they've made.

The Satin Peaches were next up.I'm not a fan of the type of "Rock" that the band played so rather than comment negatively on their performance I'll move straight on to the headliners...

I love the Go! Team live so was really frustrated over the Summer as I kept attending festivals where they were playing but couldn't watch their full set as I'd always have to run off after a couple of songs to photograph another band on a different stage.Luckily I was able to stay for the duration of the Astoria show so looked forward to their performance.
The band put on a fairly aggressive show, picking out songs from debut album "Thunder lightning strike" and current release "Proof of youth".
Band members swapped instruments regularly, like a musical runaround with the all singing, all dancing, all jumping up and down quite a lot Ninja leading the proceedings the majority of the time.
There were a few occasions when she was able to get her breath back though, including a full on version of instrumental single "Junior Kickstart", seeing band leader Ian Parton throw a few shapes alongside fellow members Sam and Jamie as they all "Rocked out"!!
The band have two drum kits with members taking turns to play them.Skin basher Chi got her moment in the spotlight when she moved to the front to sing "Fake ID", causing a great reaction from the crowd.
Go! Team recordings generally have a very harsh production and this was reproduced live causing a bit of a muddy racket at times as songs became unrecognizable.Standing in front of a bloody huge set of speakers probably didn't help mind you!!
This didn't affect my enthusiasm for the gig though and was bowled over with raw performances of "Thunder..." classics "Ladyflash","Panther dash", "Huddle formation" and my all time fave Go! Team track "Bottle rocket".The new album was also represented well seeing "Grip like a vice" and Titanic vandalism" go down a storm with the crowd.
The band have mentioned several times in interviews that they think their best audiences are in Scotland.I certainly believe that the London crowd gave them a run for their money though as they were going mental throughout the night, cheering and dancing along and obviously creating a huge roar when shouting the band back for their encore after they left the stage.
We were all rewarded with the bands last single "Doing it right".I love the song and the chorus always reminds me of a Sesame Street number for some reason.
The band ended on another new track which I believe was "Keys to the city" but I had gone a bit deaf by then so I'm not 100% sure!
I had a great time anyway, even though I couldn't hear a word of what people were saying the next day.

The Go! Team - Catch them when you can but bring along your earplugs!

Last updated: 19/04/2018 01:10:36

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