Everything You’ve Come to Expect is a darkly romantic collection of dreamy love songs, interspersed with symbol clashes, heart wrenching chords and Alex Turner’s ingeniously metaphorical lyrics that resonate with aspects of life usually seen as mundane suddenly made twisted and gothic. Words that leave you half wondering what they’re on about, and when you dig a little deeper leave you longing for more.
In a reversed convention, a tornado of pink petal confetti clouded the stage on the boys’ arrival, making for a more dramatic entrance: oh-so typical of the mysterious front men. They wooed the crowd first joined by Johnny Marr, covering Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me by the Smiths. Miles Kane radiated a relaxed vibe in a snazzy silk kimno while Turner looked dracula-esque with his trademark slicked back black hair and a leather jacket with the collar up, emphasising the supernatural elements streaked throughout their album. Pretty much every song interprets a warped vision of fear, casting shadows and secrecy; demonstrating the wizardry of the pair at creating songs that make you feel some kind of intrigued way.
A three-piece string section occupied the right side of the stage, echoing that fine tuned spine-chilling signature that belongs to TLSP, as well as illuminating their hypnotic orchestral tones (particularly featured in Aviation). The band’s sex appeal is glued together by the constant theme of dreams that makes their songs more alluring, and live Alex Turner and Miles Kane’s purring voices contribute even more to the ignition of those deep dark feelings inside.
A wicked gale came howling in through Sheffield City centre
Their set continued with Standing Next to Me and Separate and Ever Deadly: classics from their 2008 debut album The Age of the Understatement, before becoming mostly dominated by their newest releases. Alexandra Palace, with it’s high ceiling and glass enormity, acted as a festival tent enhancing the energy of the crowd and the electric atmosphere for numbers like Bad Habits (provoking impulsive dancing) and Used to be My Girl. The Dream Synopsis left fans screaming ‘a wicked gale came howling in through Sheffield City Centre’ (myself included): a sophisticated tribute to Alex’s hometown. Turner and Kane performed songs with an elaborate, melodramatic intensity and separated them with close stage moments and whispered conversations, addressing their allusive image.
The pair performed a The Fall cover – Totally Wired, again joined by Johnny Marr and the much anticipated encore included Sweet Dreams TN, a heavy ballad that addresses the cliches of love in a very non-cliche, despairing way; with lyrics like ‘it’s really just the pits without you baby’ and ‘I just don’t recognise this fool that you have made me, oh I ain’t seen him for a while.’ A concealed disco ball had descended during the set, and for the encore Turner suggested to Kane that they prolong it’s presence – ‘since it’s the last night of the tour.’ TLSP final song was a tribute to David Bowie performed with Cam Avery – their version of Moonage Daydream.
The selection of band merch for sale included cool limited edition posters, canvas bags and slip mats – the opportunity to buy a ringer tee featuring Everything You’ve Come to Expect was one I did not pass up.
The Last Shadow Puppets’s hauntingly good gig was a 10/10 would recommend that has made me appreciate that listening to their vinyl really isn’t the same anymore after hearing them live. I’m also saddened by the fact I won’t be seeing Alex Turner in the flesh again for quite some time (unless by some miracle Arctic Monkeys finally bring out a new album).
Check out a snippet below of The Last Shadow Puppets performing Aviation (poorly recorded by myself) or find out more about the band here.
Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me
Standing Next To Me
Separate And Ever Deadly
Used to Be My Girl
My Mistakes Were Made For You
The Element of Surprise
The Age Of The Understatement
The Dream Synopsis
In My Room
Everything You’ve Come to Expect
Sweet Dreams, TN