The Thrills, Brixton Academy

Thrills weave star-spangled threads into Americana quilt
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The Independent Culture

Unabashed possessors of a star-spangled crush, The Thrills wear their Stateside influences on their sleeves, not to mention every other piece of cotton they sport. The church of Americana is the broadest of cathedrals; many foreign musicians have brought those influences back home, been welcomed with open arms and taken as one of their own.

Unabashed possessors of a star-spangled crush, The Thrills wear their Stateside influences on their sleeves, not to mention every other piece of cotton they sport. The church of Americana is the broadest of cathedrals; many foreign musicians have brought those influences back home, been welcomed with open arms and taken as one of their own.

Back in the USA, The Thrills have been showered with glittering prizes and fêted by those who still become dewy-eyed at the mention of Buffalo Springfield.

The inspiration for the material on their debut album was a four-month stint in San Diego in 1999. If So Much For The City is informed by that period, the band used the time well, dreaming and realising the myths and legends of the Golden State.

Naturally, The Thrills have already been prefixed with the dreaded term "sun-drenched", but the new songs suggest a clever sidestep from affirmation to scepticism.

Tonight's performance of "Saturday Night" is indicative of this shift, with its tale of clubbing and Conor Deasy's particular emphasis on the line "hate on a Saturday night".

Shoehorned between a tour with alt legends The Pixies and disappointed Democrats REM, The Thrills are back in Blighty to wow. A hatful of memorable singles doesn't hurt when you're looking to sell out mini-hangars like the Academy.

Percolated through a multitude of Mojo-approved influences, each song is identifiably Thrills-like, and therefore a contender for the band signature tune. "Not For All The Love In The World" is no different. Although the big country lies more in their imagination than their blood, the likes of Chuck Berry and Bruce Springsteen will be smiling at lyrics like "I've got a tank full of gas to ride".

Of course, the side-effect is that every tune can bleed into one. Conor's voice, born for a kind of wistful indie-pop, is the prime culprit in blurring the line between each song. Still, this kind of consistency never hurt Neil Young.

One thing's for sure: so long as there is a market for all the things Rolling Stone magazine loves, The Thrills will remain the same.

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