Live Review: Shamir, GL

5 February 2016 | 12:31 pm | Ben Meyer

"It's all fun and high energy. Shamir does not disappoint."

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Dressed in black, GL thanks the crowd and begins with Take Me Back. The two-piece are heavy on the synth and Ella Thompson stuns with stratospheric vocals. Graeme Pogson provides live beats via a touch pad, the movement providing a dynamism that's enjoyable to watch. Their music feels like it comes straight out of the '80s and their lyrics focus on the age old themes of love and heartache. A sizeable cohort of punters make the most of the room up front to show their dance moves off to each other, but the highlight of the set is seeing Shamir's drummer watching and dancing in the wings.

Shamir takes the stage with a five-piece band that treats the crowd to set jam-packed with killer vocals, fun lyrics and crusty beats. It's clear from the outset that the band drip sass, so much so that these two words are probably going to be synonymous with Shamir over the next couple of years. The set features songs from Ratchet and the Northtown EP. Shamir's homage to his hometown, Vegas, is the opener. On The Regular follows soon after and the band get the crowd to join in on the bridge. This track in particular results in lengthy cheering and applause at song's conclusion, to the extent where Shamir muses, "And to think that we weren't gonna play that song 'cause we didn't think it was that popular". Hot Mess is introduced with a quip that the song is Shamir's autobiography and this is followed by ode to underage drinking, Make A Scene. If It Wasn't True gets everyone dancing — somehow even more than they were before — and Shamir shares some life advice: it's better to be naive than jaded, for some reason. A brief interlude occurs while Shamir locates a guitar on which to play the acoustic KC and the intimacy of this song provides a welcome lull. Head In The Clouds is the last song and, after the briefest of interludes during which the band doesn't leave the stage, Shamir encourages, "Scream if you want a ballad. Scream if you want to dance!" The dancing screams clearly win. As such, they launch into an encore: Sometimes A Man. It's all fun and high energy. Shamir does not disappoint.