Live Review: Two Door Cinema Club at Whelan’s, Dublin

Tudor Door Cinema Club (Two Door Cinema Club)
Whelan’s, Dublin
11 April 2016

SO WHAT do the new songs sound like? After more than two years away from the public’s gaze, that was the question on the lips of those who didn’t quite manage to squeeze into the tight confines of Whelan’s of Wexford Street. Two Door Cinema Club are back and yet there were no new tunes tonight as the trio ran through their impressive back catalogue for only the second time since late 2013. The only thing new we’ve learned, after a riotously sweat-inducing show, is that Alex Trimble seems to have adopted an American accent to go with a new grunge-era hairstyle. Evidently, it’s not just Turner who has been swayed by our neighbours to the West while on some time out.

If Two Door are keeping stump about their anticipated third album, then their secrecy is in keeping with the manner of their comeback. Tonight was billed as ‘Tudor Cinema Club’, a tribute act to the real thing, although eagle-eyed fans were quick to snap up tickets to make this possibly the fastest selling ‘tribute gig’ in Irish history. When the real Two Door took to Whelan’s stage, the band’s relative rustiness was evident early on. Openers Sleep Alone, Undercover Martyn and Do You Want It All were met with rapturous response, though they didn’t quite fizz in the way one might expect – the band’s individual parts yet to fully moulded to one. This was understandable after so long away. Really tonight was more akin to an open rehearsal as the band – expanded to a five-piece live – gear up for a run of summer festival shows.

If Two Door have not yet technically returned to the peak of their live powers, then this was at least a welcome reminder of just how fun and infectious their blend of indie pop is. Guitarist Sam Halliday hammered out hook after hook as a stunning Come Back Home, Something Good Can Work and I Can Talk emphasised their penchant for catchy choruses. Although all but one song from their Choice Music Prize winning debut was aired tonight, it was songs from 2012’s less critically acclaimed, Beacon, that drew the greatest response. If Trimble felt anyway forgetful as to the lyrics of Handshake, Sun or Next Year, then he was aptly reminded by a sold out Whelan’s bellowing them back at him.

The night ended with What You Know as the front five rows descended into all manner of bodies flailing and moshing about. You don’t want to be alone was the message. It’s good to have them back.


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