"for the happy, the sad, I don't want to be, another page in your diary"

Monday 19 February 2024

The Vaccines

Tonight I am seeing the Vaccines and for the first time in many a year I am at the Sheffield Octagon. This is because I was too slow in getting tickets for Rock City which sold out very quickly.

Outside the Octagon it seems to have changed somewhat. For starters there’s a big multi-storey car park right next to it. I’m sure that wasn’t there before. It’s convenient but will no doubt be a nightmare to get out of later. All the same I give it a go.

Inside it is pretty much how I remember it. A big airy venue with a high stage and now with the added bonus of decent local beer e.g. Thornbridge. I should come here more often.

I just catch the end of Divorce, who are from Nottingham, but sadly I didn’t see much of them.


After only a fifteen minute break we then have Teen Jesus & the Jean Teasers. Who have a great name and give a very energetic performance. They are four girls with 400 tattoos. Not judging just saying... They are also from Australia and are possibly just the type of raucous warm-up we need for the Vaccines. Who are, as ever, pretty lively themselves.


This tour is to promote their new album, which is their sixth, ‘Pick Up Full Of Pink Carnations’. The stage is dutifully adorned with carnations although not many of them seem to be pink.

They open with ‘Love To Walk Away’ off the new record before going straight into a run of favourites. From the lively ‘Wreckin’ Bar (Ra Ra Ra)’ into the even more lively ‘I Can’t Quit’ with the guitar of Timothy Lanham hogging centre stage and singer Justin Hayward-Young ‘dancing’ madly.


Then we get ‘Post Break-Up Sex’ before the classic and anthemic ‘Wetsuit’ stops the show. As it always does with its poignant reminder of the unstoppable passage of time. This gives everyone a breather.

There were plenty from the new record, as you’d expect. Six tracks in total including the excellent ‘Discount de Kooning (Last One Standing)’ and these were well received, no doubt thanks to its very familiar formula. There was also the same number from their debut. Again largely as expected.


I think we will have to agree to disagree on what they should have picked from the rest of their albums but then few bands agree with me on this point.

The end of the set was peppered with favourites as they wound things up with 'I Always Knew', ‘If You Wanna’ and, as always, ‘All In White’.


For the encore there were two more tracks from the new album ‘Sometimes, I Swear’ and ‘Lunar Eclipse’ before ‘All My Friends Are Falling In Love’ closes an excellent performance or so we thought.

But there was one more track as the band struck up ‘Nørgaard’ but Justin didn’t offer any vocals and let the crowd sing it by themselves. A few seconds later he simply walks off stage and leaves the crowd to it as the band play the full track.

It’s a track that has somewhat dropped off their setlist in the last few years. It has some problematic lyrics and perhaps the 37 year old Hayward-Young, who admits his homage to the Danish model now seems a bit creepy, would rather not sing it anymore. This may or may not be the solution.

No comments:

Post a Comment