One of the most fascinatingly forward-thinking bands currently working in rock ’n’ roll, England’s IDLES will play Vancouver next spring. Supporting the band’s upcoming Nigel Godrich–produced album TANGK, the quintet headlines the PNE Forum on May 3, 2024. Tickets go on sale December 8 at 9am.
IDLES’ ascension to 4,000-seat venues has been a gradual one, with the group building a reputation as one of the most uncompromising and uplifting live bands on the planet. In a 2018 interview with the Straight, singer Joe Talbot said:
“One of the contrasts between us and other bands—especially the bands that we looked up to in the early to late 2000s—is that we haven’t had any handouts or hype or money thrown at us at any point. We are consistently hard-working and are very grateful for where we are. Gratitude manifests itself in more hard work. We don’t sit around congratulating ourselves for all the good things that we’ve done. We’re more interested in repaying our audiences.”
The music, of course, matters—with IDLES drawing on influences ranging from postpunk and rockabilly to synth-pop and hardcore in songs tackling everything from the beauty of immigrants to the importance of emotional vulnerability. But just as big a part of things is the band’s connection with those who show up at its live shows, with Talbot noting in the Straight interview:
“We’ve all become better people as we’ve become more vulnerable, and people are giving that back. All we’re doing is trying to open a dialogue. We’re not more important than people in the room—in fact, those people are more important than us because if they don’t pay to see us we’re fucking nothing. On a basic, humane level, what a beautiful thing that they are lending their ear to us. When you get that exchange between band and audience, you end up with a ball of fucking energy.”
Past IDLES albums have been inspired by traumatic life events, including Talbot losing his mom (2017’s Brutalism), and having a stillborn daughter (2018’s Joy As An Act of Resistance).
Such emotionally raw records, along with IDLES’ vaunted live show, have made the band no shortage of high-profile fans, with LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy and Nancy Whang both signing on for guest vocals on TANGK. Joining Godrich on the recording side of things are hip-hop producer Kenny Beats and the band’s guitarist Mark Brown.
As for what to expect from the album, start with positivity, with Talbot offering this in a statement: “TANGK. I needed love. So I made it. I gave love out to the world and it feels like magic. This is our album of gratitude and power. All love songs. All is love.”
Now get ready to dance. Even if you’re convinced that you can’t, the message from IDLES is clear: you most certainly can.
Where: PNE Forum
When: March 3, 2024
Tickets: Live Nation (available December 8 at 9am)