TVD Live Shots:
Pale Waves at the
O2 Shepherds Bush Empire, 9/27

The Cure crossed with the Cocteau Twins with a touch of Blondie—that’s how I would describe one of the hottest bands in the UK at the moment, Pale Waves.

You can’t go anywhere in London without seeing posters plastering tube stations and busy street corners announcing the band’s debut record My Mind Makes Noise which was released last month and hit number 8 on the UK albums chart. Led by lead singer and guitarist Heather Baron-Gracie, Pale Waves are taking the UK by storm and priming themselves for the rest of world with their brand of incredibly catchy goth-synth-pop.

It’s fascinating to watch a group build a buzz the right way—by putting in the work. Having recorded and released a slew of widely acclaimed singles and gigging with successful peers The 1975, the buzz was building and undeniable. They would go on to win the coveted NME Under the Radar Award earlier this year and performed at the much-celebrated awards ceremony along with the likes of Alt-J and the mighty Liam Gallagher.

The show at the beautiful O2 Shepherds Bush Empire was jammed with fans and rightfully so being the first proper headlining show since the release of their debut. The set was exactly as you would imagine; high energy, dark stage, and a crowd dancing away to the ’80s inspired beats while singing along to every hook.

Pale Waves are a lot of fun to see live, and their debut could easily be the guilty pleasure of the year for many. While they are not breaking any new ground here, I don’t think they have to in this case. They wear their influences on their sleeves, they push the spirit of the music forward, and do an excellent job of reinterpreting it for a new generation.

Pale Waves’ debut My Mind Makes Noise is in stores now. The band continues to tour across Europe before returning to the States and then back again in 2019 opening for The 1975.

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