Ladyhawke and American Royalty Live at Fortune Sound Club / Olio Festival Review


American Royalty

This band played Fortune before Ladyhawke on Sept 20th. They are: bang-on vocals, dance timing out the ying-yang and shred like whoa. They even reworked a Curtis Mayfield Pusherman cover in to their set. They are the coolest band I’ve ever seen. The album doesn’t begin to expose the musical talent that these guys showcased on stage. Nice, fresh, clean, generous blues guitar sounds, murmurs among the crowd of “the next Black Keys.” But, also with a touch of rock and sometimes reggae rhythm piano bits sneaking through the heavy-duty heavy-drive Justice-style synth; they are fresh-to-death.  Speckled with some other tasty treats like an Outkast bass line by the multi-instrumentalist lead singer, pure layered vocal harmony, classic builds, as well as touching the tips of heart-tingling 80’s ballad melodies on the keys, this is a must see live party band. And again, the crazy mad shred of the lead guitarist was like twelve sexy tigers giving you love, in your faces. They are, American Royalty.


Dive-bombing in from New Zealand heritage, Ladyhawke singer-songwriter and her band came to thieve your little girl hearts and place them in the hands of a capable rock beat. The band played Fortune in Vancouver on September 21. Their solid radio-right tunes are nicely composed of Pip Brown’s singable melodies over sliding alternative guitar and an electronic bounce-inducing beat. They are enjoyable to nod along to while finding a suitable mate to sway with, building to their more danceable songs, which the majority are. Playing within the limits of the channel that is pop-rock, they manage to twist unexpected thirst-quenchers into the mix like 90’s grunge riffs reminiscent of the dark and moody Blood Hound Gang, pinches of sparkling synth lines, and Madonna-esque chorus vocals a-la Vogue. All in all the show was a testament to their experienced past, playing from her earlier confident 80’s-bolstered tracks to a new jaded, less exposed group of songs – I wonder what the artist was going that brought forth the material for her latest album, titled: Anxiety.