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Live show review: People in Planes at The Biltmore May 9, 2008

Posted by Raul in local events, Mount Pleasant, music, Vancouver.

Despite being absolutely swamped with work, I had already scored tickets for a live show of People in Planes at The Biltmore, so I felt absolutely compelled to attend, even if only for a couple of hours, for various reasons. First, I love People in Planes‘ music. This 5-men Cardiff-originated ensemble is incredibly talented. Second, I live ridiculously close to the Biltmore. It took me all of three minutes to get there and three more to get back home. And last but not least, I scored free tickets thanks to Beyond Robson. How often do you get free tickets to hear one of your favorite bands? Almost never, right? Well, there you go. So I had to extract myself from doing my work to spend a couple hours enjoying the band (also, my brain was not functioning at the time, so everything aligned itself).

The band’s front man sometimes reminds me of R.E.M.’s vocalist, but I was absolutely delighted to find that they sound pretty much exactly like they do on their website and albums. I have seen Maroon 5 live and have noticed that Adam Levine needs to lower his pitch when he sings live as he can’t reach such high notes as he usually does on his studio-recorded songs. However, this was not the case with People in Planes. They performed a large number of their upcoming album’s tracks, including my absolute favorite: Mayday (M’aidez)

There were a number of things that were slightly disappointing (none of them related to People in Planes nor the Biltmore nor Beyond Robson). First, there was a slight confusion at the door so it took them a while to find out whether I was on the guest list or not. But that was quickly resolved. Second, and this part really annoyed me: NOBODY seemed to really have the energy to dance to People in Planes’ tunes. They opened with Mayday (something I probably wouldn’t have done, I probably would have started with Last Man Standing to build the energy in the crowd. However, I was super excited to hear Mayday live, so I didn’t care much. It was surprising to find that I was pretty much the only one singing along. But then a few other folks started singing along the rest of their songs, so maybe they just needed to find the right one for them.

I am sorely disappointed in the music-attending crowd, because in every concert (at least indie band concert) I’ve been to, I don’t find that folks jump, scream, sing and yell along with the band. It was a very tame crowd for my liking. Plus, I didn’t have a +1. Normally, my good friend HZ would join me for these events but I neither told him on time nor did I have the heart to ask him to join me considering that he’s been away from his girlfriend for a few months, and they really need time together. I’m sure that when he reads this he’s going to scold me for not asking anyway, but truth be told, I am self-conscious when it comes to asking people to join me in adventures particularly when they’re partnered. I don’t like feeling like I’m the one who is taking them away from their partners (for however short time it is!). As my good friend HZ would say, I’m usually socially guilt-ridden, hehehe.

Overall, a great event. I would have really liked People in Planes to come after say, May 20th when my life will be slightly normal-ish. But to be fair, just being able to see the band live, and to hear Mayday (M’aidez) live was a highlight.

UPDATE – According to Wikipedia, “The first single from Beyond The Horizon, “Mayday (M’aidez)” will be available only on iTunes on May 6th, along with “Last Man Standing” and the “Pretty Buildings” video.” … but last night it was unavailable on iTunes, so maybe wait a few days.



1. Music review - Mayday (M’aidez) by People in Planes « Random Thoughts of a Student of the Environment - October 8, 2008

[…] in Planes trackback I had the great fortune of watching the Welsh band People in Planes live in May of 2008 at The Biltmore Cabaret (right around a very stressful time for me) and I kept trying to find the video or the MP3. […]

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