Alvvays Review by Ryan Beardsley

Canadian indie darlings Alvvays are in Camden for 2 sold-out nights at the Kentish Town Forum and there is a massive buzz about the place.

I must confess my bias, I love this band but through several quirks of fate I’ve never had the pleasure so I wasn’t going to miss this one for the world, despite the fact I’m still suffering the after effects of a horrific bout of Covid.

Here to showcase last year’s third record Blue Rev, Molly Rankin and the gang kick things off with Pharmacist and it’s a slightly anticlimactic start with some technical issues meaning I can hear more feedback than guitar for the first 30 seconds. Are the hands of fate about to transpire against me again?

Thankfully no, because after that it’s smooth sailing for a band who could come to claim the term ‘jangle pop’ as their own definitive descriptor.

Alvvays fly through beautiful 3-minute melodies so effortlessly it almost seems like they’re making them up as they go along. On Adult Diversion, singer Molly Rankin performs the entire track crouched down, microphone in one hand, synthesiser on the other in a manner not dissimilar to a plumber fixing a leak. It’s all so relaxed and casual that you feel like you’re in your mate’s back room.

They now have three universally, critically acclaimed albums and really should be one of the biggest bands in the world, far more deserving of praise and headline slots than others I won’t name (I hate you The 1975). What’s the word for a band who are critically acclaimed by those in the know, but just hasn’t broken through to the mainstream? Under-appreciated? That really doesn’t do the band justice.

The highlight of the night is Archie, Marry Me which sounds massive here and in a more just world would be belted out to a Glasto main stage crowd, but tonight Kentish Town will have to do, and they give it a good go.

We get the encore and wrap up with Lottery Noises, showcasing the range of Rankin’s voice which has been note-perfect throughout, matched only by the band’s earnestness from the first song.

I actually think they don’t know how good they are, or maybe they’re just Canadian.

More info on dates and tickets here.

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