Spector is perhaps the UK’s best kept secret. I bumped into them supporting fellow Brits, Swim Deep, in Brooklyn on Tuesday night and the band couldn’t have been more kind. It was congratulations all around as it had been my first day as New Yorker and Spector had just played their very first gig in New York. Drinks were drunk, dancing was done, all around it was a fun night for the Americans and the Brits.
The day after, I rejoined Spector at the Mercury Lounge to hang around for soundcheck and the show. After that was done, Jed (guitar) and Tom Shickle (bass) decided to have a go at the Waltz (I think). With Christmas lights dangling in the background, it was truly a romantic occasion.
The band, the true heroes that they are, braved the cold for the portraits. It was so cold that I struggled press down on the shutter button at times, but Danny walked out into the streets in a plain white tee-legend.
Come show time, the room was packing in as friends and fans came to check out the show, including Matt Hitt of the band, Drowners. Spector, perhaps the most sharp suited band I’ve ever seen, strolled onto the stage with incredible swagger and delivered a truly mind blowing show. Even watching them rehearse didn’t prepare me for the pure showmanship and enthusiasm that Fred Macpherson (lead singer) and co. exuded during their NYC set. Witty banter and anthemic tunes kept the crowd going, but the night took off when Fred randomly invited a fan to sing on stage with him. The band followed with old hits and new cuts, including “Stay High”, “Bad Boyfriend” and “Chevy Thunder,” during which Fred stop Yoann (drums) from going on until the audience went wild. Fair enough; the band was giving 110% during the show and the NYC-Too-Cool-To-Dance attitude wasn’t going to fly anymore.
Guys and girls packed in closer to watch the band round off their set and got intimate with the band (luckily we were spared from the sexual diseases Fred warned us about, in case anyone was worried). The band rounded off the night with “All The Sad Young Men,” perhaps my favorite Spector track off of their catalogue. By then, even those who didn’t know the words were shouting back the chorus “ALL THE MISERABLE GIRLS, ALL THE SAD YOUNG MEN” back at the guys. Emotions were high, kisses were shared (between Fred and Tom, mostly), and the night ended up with two-fifths of the band on the floor in a hug fest.
After the show, I caught Danny and Fred to congratulate them on putting on a true spectacle, thanks and hugs were exchanged and we parted ways. Five classy, talented, complete gentlemen. As much as it’s great to know of a ‘best kept secret,’ Spector is truly too great a band to keep to oneself. If you like The Strokes, The Killers or anthemic indie music in general, you need to know about Spector. Go listen to their music, buy merchandise and keep the music alive.
Photo Credit: Joyce Jude Lee for THE RADICAL