Sticky Fingers, Gothenburg
6 June 2009
We all have those bands that represent a specific period in our lives. The ones we just couldn’t get enough of. Every time we hear them now we are transported back to the time we were a kid, a teenager or at university, or being with our first love. Yvonne is one of those bands for me. They take me back to one of my friend’s teenage room with dark red walls and a poster of Henric de la Cour.
While Lukas Moodysson’s Show Me Love (its horrible English title, original name Fucking Åmål is so much better) paved the way for Broder Daniel, Yvonne, who were also on the soundtrack, never quite got the same following. They were branded as Joy Division copyists for most of their career and after four albums they officially split in 2003.
Last year the band reformed and did a one-off gig at Debaser in Stockholm. This year was Gothenburg’s turn. For one night we all got to be teenagers again. But having said that, with the first song of the night “Odd” from their self titled debut record Yvonne showed they are much more than just a nostalgia act. The bass and keyboard in “Odd” get the audience slowly going but it is “Wires”, the third song of the night, which gets me hooked. Its lyrics, filled with both love and loathing at the same time, feel just right.
As a darker version of Brett Anderson, Henric de la Cour slithers around the stage and shows that he can still move those hips. The rest of the band stay somewhat in the shadow of Henric but seem to be enjoying themselves nonetheless. They even let a smile out now and then although their cool demeanor is never dropped. “Cut a Smile”, with lines such as “I am disease/You are the sick/In terms of filth somewhere I fit” still invoke the darkness, anxiety and self doubt that it used to.
“Modern Love”, probably the group’s biggest hit, shows the lighter side to the band and gets the dance floor in a frenzy, which is no surprise as it’s an absolute classic. “Transfixed” and “Scratch Your Way Out”, also from Getting Out, Getting Anywhere follow and then to my dismay the boys exit the stage.
When they come back with the fateful “Drifter”, probably their best live song, they are almost forgiven however it is the final number, “Only Dancing”, that goes straight to the heart. It used to end their shows back in the day and no wonder. Isn’t this how we all want a night out to end? Closing our eyes, finding a hand in our hands and hearing a soft whisper saying “take me home”.
Yvonne will always be one of my old favourites but tonight they have shown that their music does not only belong in the 1990s. While there are no confirmed plans for a new Yvonne album, Henric is supposedly working on new things with “some of the members of Yvonne”. Maybe something to look forward to at the end of the year?