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01.28.18 DaveyBoy's Top 50 Albums Of 2017 11.24.17 DaveyBoy's Top 50 Albums Of 2016
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03.14.12 DaveyBoy's Soundwave Festival 2012 01.19.12 DaveyBoy's Top 40 Songs Of 2011
01.06.12 DaveyBoy's Top 40 Albums Of 2011 12.26.11 DaveyBoy's Top 10 Live Gigs Of 2011
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DaveyBoy's Top 10 Live Gigs Of 2010

Here are my top 10 gigs of 2010. It's probably a bit of a stretch listing 10, since 7 of them were festival sets, but I felt both SoundWave and The Big Day Out were extremely strong this past year.

I skipped Muse's late year arena shows since their headlining spot at January's Big Day Out festival was more than enough to keep me satisfied for a long while. Playing practically a full set & including a tremendous light show, the English trio were right at the top of their game and almost as good as when I saw them in early '07. The new songs sounded better than I expected, while their set was pretty spot on apart from excluding Stockholm Syndrome. It was great to get right up near the front & the crowd surge just before they came on almost swept me off my feet. Better was the sight of practically everyone within the D barrier bouncing along to the chorus of Time Is Running Out, which was the set highlight. That song, along with Starlight & Uprising were the sing-along stand-outs, prior to the sensational encore which included Jet's Nic Cester coming out to sing Back In Black, before Muse finished it off in grand style with Plug In Baby & crowd favorite Knights of Cydonia.
2Biffy Clyro

I had heard the anecdotes about how accomplished Biffy Clyro were live, but I still had no idea how exceptional a show this would turn out to be. The Scottish trio worked like a well-oiled machine all night as the Johnston twins provided a stunning musical accompaniment to Simon Neil's rapid-fire, pleading howls. Over an hour and a half, one could not help but be extremely impressed by the front man's ability to pull off all kinds of sounds on his multitude of guitars, while also singing away as if his life depended on it. Much respect should go to the band for playing these 21 songs as if they were an unknown band who had just released their debut LP. No additional guitarist or keys/synth players! Just 3 guys rocking the fu*k out until sweat is flying everywhere. Thoroughly recommended.

Appearing mid-afternoon on the main stage at the SoundWave festival, when Placebo walked on stage, I first had to wonder "Who are all these people"? This is a trio, yet there are 6 people on stage! This included a lady who played keys, violin & a theremin. Thankfully, it was all worth it since the sound they made was nothing short of fantastic. While I'm certain there were a few attendees who felt they just stood there and played, who cares when they get their sound so right. From oldie Special K through to new single Bright Lights, Placebo hit all the right notes. My only minor gripe was that their best song Every You Every Me was performed as a fast rocking track. It was still great, but it took me so much by surprise that I only got into it towards the end. The highlight of an excellent day!
4Jimmy Eat World

Not far behind Placebo in quality at SoundWave were Jimmy Eat World. Talk about a deep set! From the woh wohs of opener Sweetness through to the fantastic sing-along closing quartet (Hear You Me, Bleed American, Pain and The Middle), this was just a fans dream setlist. A nice combination of rock and pop, I was surprised at how much lead guitar Jim plays. The weakest songs were their most recent, but Always Be was helped immensely by some redhead named Hayley coming out to sing with them. Too many bands shy away from ballads at rock festivals and J.E.W proved why that is a mistake. Hearing 23 and Hear You Me while the sun was setting was a fantastic experience.
5Birds Of Tokyo

Having only seen front-man Ian Kenny's "other" band Karnivool live (& being a little disappointed), I was not sure what to expect from Birds Of Tokyo. It did not take long for my doubts to be cast aside however. Mr. Kenny simply has the best vocals in the land right now & while the band played competently throughout, the audience were undoubtedly in Ian's hands from beginning to end. For the most part, their setlist was well selected. Predictably, Silhouettic and set closer Broken Bones were the highlights... As well as new song Plans, which especially had the audience's larger than expected female turn-up singing along at full voice.
6Hilltop Hoods

This may sound silly, but these guys were the surprise of the Big Day Out for me. Not only did they bring a fun, crowd-involving atmosphere to proceedings, but they also sounded just as clear as on record, which is not always the case with rappers. Furthermore, they showed off their rapping talent, especially MC Pressure who occasionally sped up his delivery to add some variety. They played all the crowd favorites to a huge audience and it just seemed right for the occasion. I know the music isn't live, but the DJ's couldn't be faltered either.
7Rx Bandits

Opening proceedings at SoundWave, it should be illegal for the first act of a festival to be this good! As they came on, my better half shot me a "who are the 3 hippies & why do they have an I.T guy with them?" look, but then they started playing... And it was near-perfect. These 4 guys have completed a thesis in how to play their instruments... Chris is a fantastic drummer, while Matt & Steve were like a well-oiled machine on their guitars. How Matt can do what he does on guitar & still sing to such a high quality is beyond me. I'd love to one day see them play a longer set.
8The Blackout

This sextet supported fellow Welshmen Lostprophets & while it was a close call, they ended up putting on a better show. Playing their melodic & accessible brand of post-hardcore, front-men Sean Smith & Gavin Butler especially put on one hell of an entertaining show. Come the mid-way point of the set, it seemed as if everyone had been won over... If not by the music, then by Smith.s curiously forthright & endearing stage banter... He even managed to make everyone get down on their knees during sing-along highlight Save Ourselves. Heavy, catchy & FUN!
9Rise Against

It's always a pleasure to see Tim & the boys belt out some songs & their rapid-fire performance at the Big Day Out was no exception. Full throttle energy & passion from start to finish, with Tim actually sounding better here than he did when I saw them headline a show in 2009. The usual scream-along highlights were all there, while it was also great to finally hear Savior played live. Tim forgetting the words to the 2nd verse of Hero of War was more funny than disappointing, while the crowd was as hot & sweaty as expected.

The English quartet's performance at the Big Day Out probably would have been ranked higher had I had a better vantage point, but an amazingly large crowd saw a sensational set which spanned the Brits' 3 albums. The sing-along factor was higher than anybody could have imagined... So much so, that lead singer Meighan seemed far too appreciative to do his usual messiah act.
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