Last September I saw Crocodiles live for the first time. I’d been a fan since 2009, and I had been waiting many years to see then live. Seeing them in a record store playing for just over 20 minutes wasn’t how I imagined it to be, but it was better than what I had previously- which was nothing. Go forward to just under a year and I finally get to see them in an environment I feel comfortable with.
Earlier in the day I briefly hung out with Brandon and Charlie in an alley for an interview. I’ll type it up later if my dictaphone picked anything up. I bought it off Amazon from a dodgy seller. I never learn.
Sebright Arms is a wonderful pub that was just made to have bands like Crocodiles perform. A small, dark room with enough space for you to move your body round in any way you wish. I sure as hell did. They opened with Sunday (Psychic Conversations #9.) Immediately they launched the crowd into a frenzy. 150 sweaty bodies had been waiting for this. I think secretly my girlfriend who came with me, had been waiting for this too.
When I saw them last year it was a little after their record, Endless Flowers had come out but they still played older songs such as I Wanna Kill and All My Hate And Hexes Are For You (personal favourite.) These songs weren’t played last night, but to be honest, I didn’t care. I just wanted to see them play as a full set. Was my mind blown? Hell yes. I was stood right by a speaker so my eardrums are fucked too. I can’t really hear anything properly yet. Everything sounds a bit fuzzy; the remains of the night before are stuck. I’ll cling until 2nd October where it will happen all over again.
Each member of Crocodiles leaves you wonderfully hypnotised. I was stood directly in front of Marco, and when he plays bass you cannot help but fall into a similar trance. His eyes are shut, as if he is another world. You don’t know if you are meant to follow him or to slightly veer into your own way. You’ll probably meet midway anyway. Maybe at the encore. Lose your shit kids. It’s the best way to have a good time. Then we have Robin on keys who pretty much lures you in as soon as she plays. Rocking back and forth, harmonising with Brandon. You can see the enthusiasm so clearly when she plays. I cannot stress enough just how inspiring they are to watch. Robert unleashes unruly fury on the drums; I wouldn’t be surprised if he didn’t have abrasions after playing. He may be the newest member, but the family unity they have is still as pure as it ever was. Charlie is without a doubt the best guitarist I’ve ever seen live. He does something truly mind-blowing on that stage. You cannot help but stare. From the way he flung some beer around as he was playing the guitar to his jolting movements whilst he annihilates the guitar. The force he plays with seems so effortless; he makes you wish you could play the guitar and created your own creepy sound. Brandon’s vocals are just perfect. His yelps during Sunday to the way he sings “R-E-F-U-S-E” on the song Refuse Angels just leaves you in awe. He throttles the mic stand with frustrated force. You can tell that for him, and the others that music is everything to them. And that’s why their music means everything to their fans.
What I loved about this show was the sheer diversity in the crowd. From old guys coming to the show on their own to the lost kids finally finding a home (like myself)- this show was one of my highlights of the year. They played a solid mixture of all four records. I sang my heart out to every song, I swayed and my hearing is less than good right now. I had the best time ever. I’m not sure how to write a typical live review; all I can do is write about how the show made me feel and what I saw. I like to think I’ve sort of done that.
There were leaflets advertising their next London date which is on the 2nd October at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club. Tickets are only £10 and you can get them here: https://parallellines.ticketabc.com/events/crocodiles-2/ I cannot wait to feel this way again in October.
I’d also like to mention that Virals were incredible last night. They played for a little under half an hour I think, but it was enough for the crowd to know that Virals are a brutal talent. And you know what? My girlfriend who likes Michael Buble (I know..I know, but I see past it) turned to me and said she enjoyed Virals. She’s a good one, I know.
In short, Crocodiles blew my mind (and eardrums) last night. To see your favourite band live is beyond words; it reinforced a lot of things for me. Things that caused me to love them the first time round. Crocs are for sure, the best live band you’ll see. They put their all into it, and you return the favour by losing your mind.
Groove is in the heart kids, let it all out!