Live review

The Afghan Whigs 

The Electric Ballroom, London

added: 20 Jul 2014 // gig date: 15 Jul 2014
reviewer: Paul Chapinal

The Afghan Whigs - The Electric Ballroom, London - Printable version
The Afghan Whigs dressed all in black, look big, powerful and intimidating as they dominate a rather cramped stage. The effect might be amplified by the surroundings, but the band definitely arrive with an intention to dominate - as they peel out a massive version of Parked Outside; an opening statement of intent if ever there was one.

Quickly followed by another new song Matamoros, the band's new album is the core of the set - and its quality is underlined by the fact that the new material sits comfortably with the likes of Going to Town and a ferocious My Enemy.

The band themselves, maybe because of the lack of space, are almost impassive. Greg Dulli riffing away centre stage is in fine voice and appears to be enjoying himself, but says little.

The lack of interaction though, doesn't stop them from tearing the audience’s faces off with Heaven on Their Minds and Royal Cream.

The Afghan Whigs have always been intense but they have their lighter moments - teasing the audience with snippets of Another Brick in the Wall, Tusk and closing the main set with Lost in the Woods and The Beatles' Getting Better.

That was all kicked into touch with a vicious rendition of John the Baptist, which was countered with Faded and a cover of the late Bobby Womack’s Across 110th Street. A fitting end to a performance by a band that doesn’t have that much to prove, but still plenty to offer.

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4 stars

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