Two Door Cinema Club - Cardiff University
‘It was around this time last year we were at this same venue, Cardiff’ Alex Timble says midway through his band’s set with evident joy to a sweat-soaked crowd. The frontman of Two Door Cinema Club is having a ball, and rightly so.
Since their last visit to Cardiff University, TDCC have made the leap from indie hopefuls to global contenders. Their performance at the opening ceremony of the London Olympics showed they were more than comfortable in such colossal surroundings and their sophomore album, Beacon, was a top twenty success in the U.S. With producer Jacknife Lee at the controls, it’s a much bolder record than its predecessor, Tourist History.
Beacon’s widescreen ambitions kick off the set with former single Sleep Alone a mid-paced lament that comes alive in a chorus that’s smeared in Sam Halliday’s echoing guitar lines. U2 guitarist The Edge calls his distinct sound his ‘Coca-Cola riff’ and, although Halliday might not brand his melodies, he’s creating something that’s uniquely TDCC.
Halliday’s frenetic riffs continue with Undercover Martyn, bristling with a series of spindly, high-octane notes and Timble’s soft vocals that soar towards the chorus. The material from Beacon is given a warm reception but it’s the staple singles from Tourist History that receive the biggest wails and whoops from the crowd.
The Bangor trio has been playing these songs for the best part of four years and they still form the bedrock of their set. This Is The Life is just as vibrant as it was on its first release, Something Good Can Work is custom-built for the festival circuit (although it works just as well on a drab Thursday night in January) and I Can Talk is three minutes of dumb indie fun with its unmistakable monosyllabic intro.
After a brief departure, a three-song encore is completed by the ubiquitous What You Know. A soundtrack for umpteen TV trailers, video games and radio ads, Halliday’s breakneck guitar riff provides the track with its undeniable euphoria and closes a triumphant set. Beacon may still take a little time to adjust to, but TDCC’s indie-pop sheen continues to flourish.