The ever so elusive Dublin-based band, Fontaines D.C. played their first show since the pandemic hit in March and brought us the best of ‘Dogrel’ and ‘A Hero’s Death’. Live from the O2 Academy Brixton, streamed throughout the world via MelodyVR.
Flames appear in the background and the energy comes through in full force as the opening lines to ‘Televised Mind’ start to kick off. Just by looking at lead singer’s Grian Chatten’s characteristics on stage, it is as if nothing has changed. As if we’re still in a sweaty, dark place full of drunken people that will get their final beer or so they say but no we are all on our couch at home in the living room alone or possibly with the other people residing in your home. Yet when the fantastic instrumentals pick up we get lost in a moment and are longing to be back in that room.
Throughout the hour and ten minutes set we get to see different backgrounds switching the tone with every new track that gets played. Possibly the most melancholic four minutes created by the Irish five-piece is when pink-hued waves start to eradicate the place and ‘I Don’t Belong’ starts to play. With the powerful lyrics “I don’t belong to anyone, I don’t wanna belong to anyone,”, the feeling of despair gets transmitted to all the places that might have been listening to this mighty performance.
The once filled to the brim Brixton Academy is completely empty apart from the band and their crew but yet it doesn’t seem to affect the men on stage. Chatten is running around in a circle, clapping to himself, a symbol that months prior would’ve challenged the crowd to create some movement in their atmospheres as well. As this is not possible right now, we get to see and ponder what might happen once the entertainment business starts to pick up again.
If now more than ever, Fontaines D.C. can be described as a band full of the glorious balance of perfect nonchalant excellence. With ‘Sha-Sha-Sha’ and ‘Boys In the Better Land’ the five-piece brings back the raw power the world got to know them for and proved that they are still as vibrant and unique as they were when we first were introduced to their universe of gloom and despair.
Text by: Lauren Dehollogne