U.K. punk band invigorates American crowd

February 5, 2013

After bursting onto the music scene in 2011 with their critically acclaimed debut and enjoying continued success with 2012’s album “Come of Age,” U.K. punks The Vaccines continue their hot streak with a U.S. headlining tour. Their show at Terminal 5 on Thursday, Jan. 31 demonstrated both the band’s growing American presence as they near the end of the U.S. leg of their 2013 tour and its potential to follow in the footsteps of rockers like the Arctic Monkeys.

The night’s opening acts included Australian indie-pop band San Cisco and New York rockers DIIV — pronounced dive — with the former providing perfectly catchy tunes to energize the crowd. The chemistry between lead singer and guitarist Jordi Davieson and drummer and vocalist Scarlett Stevens of San Cisco bolstered their bright, garage pop. The second band played more of a Nirvana-meets-world-music set, which failed to hold the audience’s attention for long.

Finally, after over an hour of watching roadies set up the instruments, The Vaccines finally took the stage and dived straight into their flashy set with “No Hope.” The heavy drums and rapid guitars at once became familiar, and the fans concurred that the band was well worth the wait.

Powering through the set, The Vaccines played new tracks such as “Tiger Blood” and the bass-heavy “Ghost Town,” as well as old favorites like “Blow It Up,” “Post Break-Up Sex” and “Wetsuit.” In addition to multiple fem-ale crowd surfers, one young woman successfully jumped onstage, but was chased off after a few seconds of fame.

Frontman Justin Young moved around the stage comfortably, playing in a style surprisingly similar to that of Dave Grohl — head banging included. Without a doubt, “If You Wanna” and “Wreckin’ Bar” were the most high-energy songs, causing the crowds on every floor of Terminal 5 to bounce around and scream the lyrics.

Despite a solid performance with a three-song encore, the band barely spoke to the audience between songs. Disregarding this lack of connection, which was actually due to a time constraint, The Vaccines clearly demonstrated they have the potential to be America’s next big rock band.

Yasmine Panah is a staff writer. Email her at music@nyunews.com.

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