Now, ever since I turned 21 (the official “OMG I shouldn’t even need an ID anymore” age), I have hated underage gigs. They always too crowded, too “fan-y” (is that a word?), I don’t know if it’s the over consumption of energy drinks or what, but all the punters seem incredibly overexcited to be there. Which is probably why tour organizers love them so much. The Framing Hanley gig at The Underworld, Camden, was sold out, and you could totally tell. The entire lower level was filled with underage kids, hopped up on coca cola and energy drinks. I don’t know whether it was the fact that they are allowed out on a school night or that they were at a bar without their parents, but these kids were crazy appreciative of all the bands that played.
Local pop-punk band Brooke got a heroes welcome, when I heard the crowd scream for them, I thought I was running really late and just catching Framing Hanley. But the uproar was well deserved; they played with the energy and enthusiasm you usually see from much more well-established bands. Some of their highlights were ‘Drama Queen’, ‘Addicted to Nothing’ and their cover of the Jason Derulo hit ‘In My Head’, where they were accompanied by Just Surrender’s Dan Simons, who was wearing sunglasses inside. At night. That…that just really annoys me.
When Just Surrender stepped up to the plate, I was secretly ecstatic; I have been a big fan of theirs since I discovered them on purevolume.com. Well, mainly just their song ‘Tell Me Everything’, so you can imagine how excited I was when I saw it on their setlist! (Hint: Very.) I pretty much embarrassed myself screaming along to the lyrics, the 12 year olds in front of me were giving me some very weird looks. *Shame*. The rest of their set was pretty great as well, some of my other faves were ‘Crazy’ (it sounds waaaay better live than recorded) ‘On My Own’ and ‘Take Me Home’. Good, clean pop-punk fun for all ages. Literally.
And then, the moment that the kids had all been waiting for, Framing Hanley stepped out onto the stage. Now I’m going to admit something, I had never heard of the band before I came to London, but since I’ve gotten here I have heard there music everywhere! With good reason too, these guys have the kind of music that may not be very different from other bands, or even that original, but it sounds good and makes you want to dance and sing along. And isn’t that what good music is supposed to do?
Framing Hanley opened their set with “Bitter-Sweet Sundown”, which I had never heard before, but was the kind of song you could sing along to without really knowing the lyrics. Some of the best songs were (my fave) ‘Back To Go Again’ and the singles ‘Stupid Girl’ of their latest, ‘A Promise to Burn’ and ‘Hear Me Now’. They did the little
encore charade that has become so predictable now and came back with the ballad-like ‘Built For Sin’ and the song that lead singer Kenneth Nixon apparently “Wrote for his Grandma” ‘Lollipop’ (I wonder what Lil’ Wayne would say to that…)
After the show, you should of seen the mass hysteria that was 15 year old girls trying to touch Nixon’s hair, it was “Fandemonium” (Har har). But after they show we all had just seen, I don’t really blame them.