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Money// Blade Factory/ 8.11.13

Following Money’s well received show at Leaf earlier in the year, the announcement of another Liverpool date at the Blade Factory seemed like an early Christmas present for many. Coming off the back of their critically lauded debut LP The Shadow of Heaven, it was going to be interesting to see whether their atmospheric sound would be just as encapsulating live. The support came in the form of Veyu who treat the audience with their Dreampop melodies that are heavily indebted to 1980s indie music, specifically the Cocteau Twins. There seems to be a substantial section of the crowd who have come to purely see Veyu, to the extent that it often seems as if they are actually the headlining band. This level of enthusiasm for a band playing second on the bill is encouraging to see but, however, came with irritating drawbacks. Once Veyu had finished their set, the section of die-hard Veyu fans decide to neglect the headliners to the degree of engaging in constant conversation and over-the-top, drink-induced laughter. Although this does make this review seem almost Scrooge-like in tone, it impacts on the more intimate and engaging parts of the show.

Jamie Lee saunters on stage, bottle of beer in hand, and launches into acapella song. Not using a microphone and without the rest of the band behind him, he engages with the crowd and everyone is silent- hanging on to his every word. Despite this being one of the show’s highlights, it is tainted by the background noise created by disinterested Veyu fans. Lee finishes his song and offers beer to the audience, whilst the rest of the band enters on stage. They start with the album’s opener, ‘So Long (God is Dead)’, with its souring melodies and Lee’s heartfelt lyrics. Soon after they launch into ‘Bluebell Fields’ and play an extended and altogether more psychedelic version that turns the song into an immerse wall of sound, proving to be the show’s highlight. The electronic manipulations of melodies and vocal lines of this live version of the track evoke the way in which Radiohead perform similar alterations during their live renditions of ‘Everything in its Right Place’. Frontman Jamie Lee eventually ends up standing at the front of the crowd, watching his band mates play whilst tapping his foot to the beat and drinking a bottle of whiskey. Recent single ‘Hold Me Forever’ follows soon after and it seems that Lee and the rest of the band have the unique quality of sounding as tight musically on record as they do live. Lee’s vocals in particular are constantly impressive throughout the night, and keep the audience transfixed.

The band eventually launch into a ferocious rendition of ‘Cold Water’ that takes the audience aback and gasping for breath, with Lee frantically crying the song’s line “running out, running out!” whilst him and the rest of the band attack their instruments and create an energetic atmosphere. A lack of piano means that the piano ballads that feature on the album are not played and the set seems a little short in length. The sheer quality of the performance though, and the band’s energy ensure that this doesn’t affect their enjoyment and is certainly a case of quality over quantity. The audience leave the Blade Factory in awe of Money’s talent regardless of the slightly shortened set. We await their next visit to Merseyside.

/Joe Hallsworth

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