Posts Tagged ‘Festival’

Christopher Nosnibor

It’s Saturday night on the August bank holiday weekend. The students are on holiday, and it’s Leeds Festival weekend. On the face of it, it seems like madness to put a gig on in a tiny underground venue in the city centre, but in fact, it makes a lot of sense. Not only are the big festivals insanely expensive, but because commercial concerns are inevitably a priority these days, they represent an ever-narrowing musical choice. Festivals have become tediously safe, with corporate sponsorship and the same obvious, established acts playing the headline slots at every festival year on year. But it’s at gigs like this that future festival features cut their teeth. I’d take four little bands, up close and personal, at a free entry show, over the entirety of Reading and Leeds any day.

The first band up, who I assume are The Blewes (since they’re mentioned on the poster if not the event page, and they don’t say) deliver a competent set of alternative rock tunes, foraying into light funk rock mode around halfway through the set. The singer / guitarist’s wearing cherry-red 12-hole DM’s, but his butch credentials are covered by the fact he’s got his shirt, off and relentless calls of ‘show us your tiger’ from the back to the room (presumably the band’s mates) sees the bassist get his moobs out too. Unremarkable but entertaining enough, they’re more than adequate bill-proppers.

The Claxbys proved rather less entertaining. The bassist may have a Big Muff in his rack, but it doesn’t do anything to elevate the three-piece’s pedestrian pub rock. It’s only on the last song when the Scunthorpe trio kick out some beefy blues rock that things get interesting, but it’s rather too little, too late.

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The Claxbys

It turns out that the cocky kid who engaged me in conversation earlier, with seemingly good intentions, is the nineteen-year-old singer with The Bohos. It’s a crap name, but the Liverpool quartet blend psychedelic and 60s rock elements into neat packages delivered with energy. They look the part, too, and emanate a confidence befitting of a band who’ve got some big gigs including a support slot with White Lies under their belt. A critical stance would be that there’s little to differentiate them from a great many other bands, but there’s no question that they’re solid. The final song of the set, ‘I’m a Hero’ comes on like Oasis wrestling with The Cooper Temple Clause, and is the work of a band with enough assurance – or ego – to go places.

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The Bohos

Weekend Recovery are a band with definite star quality, and in singer Lauren Forster, they have a compelling focal point. She does a good line I that ‘grrrrghhh’ throat thing. She plays guitar. She has a natiral charisma. And while she may have devoted more time to practising her eye movements than her fretwork, as a unit, they’re musically tight throughout. The fact the band are playing with a stand-in bassist in the form of Joe Scotcher makes this even more impressive.

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Weekend Recovery

Yes, they’re a rock band with a keen pop sensibility, and since I first caught them in February, on the release of ‘Don’t Try and Stop Me’, they’ve honed their sound and grown in confidence through touring. Debus single ‘Focus’ is dropped early in a well-paced set, and latest single, ‘New Tattoo’, lifted from their ‘Rumours’ EP and their darkest, broodingest moment to date – showcases a capacity to combine emotional intensity with anthemic tunage. And despite the lateness of the hour (they don’t start till 11pm), they manage to hold the attention and even get some people moving down the front. They wrap up the night with a stomping rendition of ‘Don’t Try and Stop Me’, and exit triumphant. So yeah, take that, Eminem.

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Beacons Metro have revealed the latest acts taking part in this autumn’s invigorating music programme. Having announced Local Natives, Roots Manuva, Hookworms and Anna Meredith earlier last month, this next announcement sees Beacons firming up their forward thinking curatorial muscles.

Leading the announcement is American Alt-Rock and Grunge pioneers Dinosaur JR, who will be performing at the Beacons Metro opening party at Leeds University Stylus on October 26th, joining the Massachusetts titans are Canadian Post-Hardcore heroes Fucked Up who will be performing their highly acclaimed debut ‘Hidden World’ in full at the Belgrave on October 27th joined by one of the brightest lights of Nashville’s thriving DIY rock movement, the quad guitar’d chaos of Diarrhea Planet.

The 27th of October will also see Boxed In, the project of songwriter & producer Oli Bayston descend on Headrow House, hot on the heels of their most recent single, the punchy and electronic ‘Jist’. The reigning Queen of UK hip-hop Lady Leshurr will be returning to Leeds to lay waste to the Belgrave Music Hall, elsewhere Cats Eyes, consisting of the Horror’s Faris Badwan, Italian-Canadian soprano, composer and multi-instrumentalist Rachel Zeffira and a huge supporting cast of musicians will perform at the beautiful Howard Assembly Rooms on November 2nd. Leeds’ own Krrum returns to Headrow House on 3rd November and finally, New York based Singer Songwriter Margaret Glaspy who is quickly establishing herself as an exciting and forward thinking songwriter, will be making her Leeds debut at Headrow House on the 6th November.

Head Booker, Ben Lewis says:
‘‘We are really proud of this new batch of artists we’re announcing. Building on our eclectic first announcement we’re bringing together huge names from the indie rock world; Dinosaur Jr and Fucked Up, alongside Grime Queen Lady Leshurr and freak folk, head turning teenagers Let’s Eat Grandma. It’s going to be a very exciting, very busy week, and with a few more top names still to come at the end of the month, it’s only getting stronger”.

A limited number of Season Pass tickets priced at £50 are on sale now via the link below. This gives you access to all the Beacons Metro show with a significant discount.

 

 

Tickets, full lineup, and more at http://beaconsmetro.com/