In my opinion, you’d be hard to pushed to find another band at the top of the game right now, than Fontaines DC. The Irishman have recently released their critically acclaimed, and arguably their best work to date, album Skinty Fia which sees them explore the theme of their heritage and living from afar in London. The band have been touring the album extensively since its release in April and have taken in the vast majority of Europe and more recently America.
Last Sunday saw Fontaines D.C. play an intimate outstore gig at Chalk for their friends down at Resident Record Store in Brighton. I have had the pleasure of taking advantage of a few of the Resident outstores at Chalk having seen Wet Leg and Father John Misty at the beginning of April and had been eagerly anticipating seeing Fontaines again for some time.
Given the nature of the gig there was not a support band prior to their arrival on stage but we were treated to some absolute classic tunes by Lucy Sheehan from Projector band, this built to the anticipation of the crowd! The roadies had primed the stage, Fontaines arrived to incredible adulation from the crowd and began to play ‘In ár gCroíthe go deo’ the opener from Skinty Fia. The lighting was solid red with strobing lights adding to the atmospherical nature of the song and its chilling bassline.
During ‘Sha She Sha’ Grian reached for his tambourine and the minute he began to tap this on his hand it disintegrated into pieces! He carried on singing but it looked like bits had been lodged as he began to pick them out! My favourite song off Skinty Fia followed next with ‘Roman Holiday’ with its delightful guitar riff from Carlos & Roy and striking lyrics ‘Baby, come on whose side are you on? I don’t wanna see the queen, I already sing her song, While they’re snuffing out hopes and they’re blotting out suns, They claim to know the form in which genius comes’
The set was ladened with new material from Skinty Fia, as you would expect, and it is an absolute joy to be hearing this out in the live environment after having this album on constant repeat since it was released at the end of April. We are treated to a run of ‘Nabokov’, ‘Big Shot’, ‘How Cold Love Is’, and ‘I Love You’ in the middle of the set. Grian’s vocals on I’ Love You’ are ferocious in their delivery and leave you wanting more. If it couldn’t get any better Fontaines closed with ‘A Hero’s Death’ and the radio hit that was Jackie Down the Line’.
A big mention has to go to the reception that ‘A Televised Mind’ received from the crowd with them moshing at the front. I even caught the bar staff having a jump around to this one too!
I’m already looking forward to seeing Fontaines play again at the end of the year and who knows maybe at a festival this summer too!