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02 Academy, Liverpool, 28/10/2012
The Wicked Whispers left me cold and disappointed in Liverpool.
I was prepared to like them. I wanted to give them the benefit of the doubt. A lot of the things that make up the Whispers I like, if not love. I like retro music, fashion from the 60’s and 70’s and most importantly I love bands from Liverpool.
They’re a tight band and individually are undoubtedly very good musicians. The thing is their songs just don’t stay with you, or me at least. The only song I can remember is the single 'Dandelion Eyes'. It felt like the only song worthy of being a single out of the whole set.
During the single, for some unknown reason, a grown man dressed in a rabbit costume made his way onstage, and held up signs with lyrics from the song on. I have no idea whose decision this was, but they should probably be asked to leave the band.
Over one of the forgettable songs front man Mike Murphy said, “This’ll be out sometime next year.” I could not tell you anything about this song in hindsight, only the fact during it I turned to a fellow reviewer and said, “They think this is a single?”
Also what put the nail in the coffin of the Wicked Whispers for me was the Stands barometer. The Stands were a band from Liverpool in the early to mid-noughties who had an album, a couple of really catchy songs and amongst other cool things supported Oasis. The Stands didn’t get many people’s attention and ultimately split up. The Wicked Whispers aren’t as good as the Stands, and I don’t think they will be. They’re also a band who are touted as psychedelic, and aren’t or at least weren’t the night I saw them.
Now this review might be verging on harsh and unfair, but I realise now why I walked away from that gig so bitterly disappointed. It is because I wanted to love the Wicked Whispers, I wanted them to be my new favourite band in Liverpool. Something I could spread, and burn CDs and force them on people.
I had a feeling the majority of the fans in attendance knew the band, and were showing up for moral support.
There was a glimpse of something late on when Wicked Whispers did an improvised instrumental in the last song but by then it was too late. I had my coat on and was saying my goodbyes.
The photographs that accompany this article were taken by Marie Hazelwood.
Commenting On: 02 Academy, Liverpool, 28/10/2012 - Wicked Whispers
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21274 Posted By: Dr Gonzo (Birmingham)
I travelled all the way from Birmingham for that night and thought they were excellent. Maybe the sound on the night wasn't as good as it has been when I've seen them previously but it was still a cracking show! Their music is quite unique, especially when related to most groups around at the moment and for that they should be praised. Fair enough, they may take a bit of adjustment from what you usually hear as it is practically has a style of it's own. I've noticed people struggle when trying pin them down or relate them to other bands, I think that's why they get a hard time from critics and reviewers. You can hear essences of pop, folk, psych and even a pinch of prog.
With this in mind, I think you need to give them another chance, my friend :)
Harry Sherriff finds 60's-influenced psychedelic retro act the Wicked Whispers instantly forgettable in a hometown show at the O2 Academy in Liverpool
Richard Lewis chats to Mike Murphy, the singer-songwriter with psychedelic Liverpool-based band the Wicked Whispers, about his group's new EP, which was produced by White Stripes producer Liam Watson
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