Throw Back Thursday Archive: Nothing But Thieves 'Last Orders'
This week's throwback is 'Last Orders' by Essex rock band Nothing But Thieves.
I'm guessing that this is a song that you may not be quite so familiar with as it is featured on the band's Graveyard Whistling EP (2014), as opposed to their debut self titled album.
'Last Orders' is personally one of my favourite Nothing But Thieves songs, perhaps because I like the fact it describes a scene of a local night out with its lyrics. I find this keeps the song flowing really well in a story like form.
I'd say that this track is much less intense than other, perhaps more well known Nothing But Thieves tracks such as 'Trip Switch' and 'Itch', but still provides the listener with all the characteristics you'd associate with the band.
Lyrics such as 'we left The Cliffs, wandered down the Broadway to The Elms (all local references) for another, a fight broke out - someone took objection to my face with a bottle' and 'some girls are screaming and my face is streaming blood as well' help to conjure up a vivid picture in your mind of a night out that has taken an unexpected wrong turn.
The song starts out with just guitars, with the odd piano chord and kick drum thrown in, creating a very atmospheric, almost unnerving tone as a backdrop for the storytelling vocal.
Front man Conor Mason's vocal enters with an almost haunting quality (in a good way, obviously). But it is only at the beginning of the chorus that the song really builds in texture, adding different guitar parts and additions to the drum beat. This helps to drive the song forward.
A distant vocal line singing 'don't want any trouble in here' can be heard during the chorus as well, perhaps adding more drama to the story being portrayed of a fight breaking out in a bar.
The second verse helps to tell more of the story of this night out with lyrics such as 'I thought I was dreaming, there were sirens screaming'.
There's a cracking guitar solo half way through the track (did I just use the word cracking...) that keeps things interesting and, in a way, could represent the actual fight itself and the manic feelings of the people involved.
'Take your fight outside' layered with 'don't want any trouble in here' and 'we got this thing under control' are the stand out lyrics for me in this song due to their repetition. I feel as though these three lines perfectly sum up the views of the people involved, or witnessing, this fight.
The song ends with a mix of these vocal lines, representing to me, everyone speaking in the bar after the fight - all at once with no order, a chaotic scene.
The final guitar chord of the song is left to drift...the calm after the storm?
Overall, 'Last Orders' has a beat that will keep your foot tapping, arms swaying and lyrics that paint a really good (or bad as it's a fight!) picture in your mind - like lyrics should.
Until next time...