Oh yes, definitely worth waiting for! Despite being a fan since seeing the band featured on TV on the NME Awards Tour in 2005, I had never seen Kaiser Chiefs live so when they announced a UK tour, I was determined to get a ticket. And so it was that I found myself in Leeds this weekend for the last date of the tour – end of tour and home town shows have that extra special magic about them, so to have the two together was fabulous.
Singer Ricky Wilson, as live a wire as I’d expected, kept the near capacity crowd entranced from beginning to end. In addition, the chemistry between the group as a whole, borne from years of making music together, was evident and meant that the set moved seamlessly from new to old; songs that must have been played hundreds of times sounded as fresh as those from the most recent album, Stay Together. The opening track was the title track from that album and proved that the band’s somewhat controversial journey into the world of synth pop easily lends itself to guitar led live shows. Playing these songs, amongst them Press Rewind and Good Clean Fun, served to remind us that whatever else, the Kaiser Chiefs still know how to write a cracking tune with catchy lyrics that manage to be thought provoking at the same time. The crowd seemed to agree with me, singing along full throttle to Parachute and the stand out song of the album, Hole in My Soul.
Bands with a long back catalogue of hits face the problem of what to include when touring, or probably more likely, what to leave out and the Kaiser Chiefs’ relative longevity means they are no exception. Mega hits like Ruby, I Predict a Riot and Every Day I Love You Less and Less are a given but the rest must be more tricky. The set list was a great mix of old and new, with Angry Mob, Everything is Average Nowadays, Oh My God, Modern Way and Never Miss A Beat mixing flawlessly with the rest of the set list. Kaiser Chief’s previous album, Education, Education, Education and War, was represented by the epic Coming Home and Meanwhile Up In Heaven, whose lyrics I can’t listen to without tears appearing…and yes, this concert was no exception.
Although I loved every minute of this concert, the highlights for me were Hole In My Soul, a song that fills me with joy whenever I hear it and, more surprisingly, Every Day I Love You Less and Less. I say surprisingly, as in spite of loving this song when it was first released, it came to be associated with an unhappy time in my life and I haven’t been able to listen to it since. On Saturday though, I was up, dancing and singing along with everyone else and I absolutely loved it – the mark of a great band / singer is when they make you love a song you previously hated. All in all, I can’t wait to go to another Kaiser Chiefs gig!
Kaiser Chiefs are playing numerous gigs in 2017 – click here to see the dates.
Stay Together is available here:
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