Two Door Cinema Club at The O2 on the 19th of January 2013
“What’s that you say; Cast of Cheers, Jape and Two Door Cinema Club all playing The 02? You must be taking the absolute Michael.” That’s a little like how the above conversation might have gone only two or so years ago. Three-bands, that at the time, were a long way off performing in the lofty surroundings of The O2 Dublin.
Well hooray for small mercies because that trio of bands were in fact scheduled to perform together. Promising signs for Irish music and the Irish gig-going population to “sell out” The O2 venue with three Irish bands. It was announced in the run up to the gig that tickets had now been “sold out”, thus resulting in an online clamour on Twitter, Facebook etc to acquire access to January’s biggest gig. Once inside the venue on the night, confusion reigned as the decision to close off half of the upstairs of the venue seemed clueless – why not sell more tickets as demand seemed to be there? Baffling.
Such was the quality of local support act, in the form of The Cast of Cheers, the O2 venue was rather packed from an early hour to catch the four-piece Swords band strut their stuff on the big stage. Human Elevator kicked things off for what was to be a rousing seven-song set-list that would take in Animals, a new previously unplayed song, Trucks at Night and finally Family. The reception garnered from the large crowd was euphoric at times for what must have been a special zenith type gig for the world-touring Cast of Cheers.
Jape followed and gave an enthusiastic performance, but the decision to only have two-members on stage was a clear mistake as the whole set was dwarfed by the huge cauldron that is The O2 stage. Add in crackling synth problems throughout, uninterested Vodafone ad enthusiasts and you have a pretty forgettable set. Such a pity as a good Jape set can be one of the best in the country. In hindsight, Cast of Cheers on the night, would have provided better penultimate support to TDCC.
Then it was time for Two Door Cinema Club to take stage at what they deemed themselves as their “biggest headline show ever.” A whirlwind introduction of Sleep Alone, Undercover Martyn, Do You Want It All and This Is The Life send the 14+ aged crowd into a manic scene akin to one from an underage disco as dancing, flailing and all sorts of excitement is propelled from all in attendance.
On stage, Two Door Cinema are reinforced by large LED strips that vibe and flicker throughout, adding another visual element. As the gig progresses, variation seems to be lacking as the same old animations and colours repeat themselves over and over. Sun, Pyramids and Kids make up an unremarkable middle section whereby the initial punch seems to be fading.
Luckily enough, Next Year with that album opening line of “I don’t know where I’m going to rest my head tonight” comes in and raises the volume within The O2. Over the next two and half minutes, it brings the crowd back up to speed where Two Door would want the crowd at, and feel most comfortable.
Handshake from latest album ‘Beacon’ keeps the clock ticking over before the perfect pop ditty turned-gritter live version of Eat That Up, It’s Good For You comes in and Two Door Cinema Club now seem to be having a ball of a time – literally. Balls, a-la Ham Sandwich, drop from the ceiling and litter the crowd as the night reaches it’s pinnacle.
The band leave the stage momentarily but return to be greeted by the thirty or so remaining balls still bobbling around the crowd. Someday and Come Back Home are ruined as the balls either get in the way or provide an irritating backdrop as the crowd begin to pop each one. Luckily enough, the balls have disappeared for What You Want which proves to be a fitting end to the night.
All in all, the night was a testament to where the promising Irish music scene is heading as of late and will hope to continue to in 2013. Despite all the positives on show, the “sold out” 3/4 full arena, visually lacking performance and obvious nerves in such big surroundings resulted in a show that just teetered with brilliance and just, ever so slightly, bordered on special.
Two Door Cinema Club Photo Gallery
Photos: Mark Earley