Wednesday, 3 July 2013

Live Review: The Wildhearts / Eureka Machines / Baby Godzilla - Leeds O2 Academy 30.06.2013

As with anything I write I try to make sure it’s from a personal perspective, otherwise it’s not a blog it’s just a music news and reviews page, So to start this update I’d like to give a shout out to Leeds Academy for doing their bit to make sure people aren’t too hammered at gigs these days by charging £4.50 a pint!!! You are robbing fucking bastards!!! Rant over, onto the review of the concert.

First up is one of my personal favourite new bands Baby Godzilla, not a band for everyone’s tastes as the best description really is the aural equivalent of a baseball bat to the head but they sure do put on one hell of a show. As usual they spend as much time in the crowd as on stage (or in tonight’s case climbing around it), we’re also treated to a stupendously long ‘Powerboat Disaster’ ending with an acapella rendition of the sea shanty screamed microphoneless in the middle of the crowd. They also played a new song which shows that we can expect much more riffage in future, and closer ‘Three Legged’ sounded great, my ears were literally numb for a while following this performance.

Second up to entertain us, literally, was Leeds own Eureka Machines, as far away from the sound of Baby Godzilla as you can get, the closest band they remind me of is Honeycrack, probably because of the sugar sweet pop that runs through their music. Opener ‘Champion The Underdog’ kicks things off in true style and it’s great to see this band getting the warm reception they deserve, I have a feeling throughout this tour they’ll have picked up a number of new fans, and well deserved as well. Chris Catalyst is a born performer on stage, bouncing around like he’s possessed and keeping the crowd entertained with some cracking between song banter. They run through all the best tunes like ‘Pop Star’, ‘Affluenza’ and an awesome version ‘(I’m) Wasting My Time (Yet Again)’, Welcome home the heroes indeed.

The first time I saw The Wildhearts live was back in October 1995, at the very same venue, except it was called Leeds Town & Country Club back then (still is according to Chris Catalyst) and I’d managed to persuade a school teacher to drive me and a bunch of other 15 year olds to see a band I liked, 18 years on I still like this band. Now they’d already played the Earth Vs Wildhearts anniversary tour in April and I was gutted to not make it to the Manchester show, so when they announced another 6 dates ending in Leeds I was appeased. Now most bands who play anniversary shows will run through the album and offer a sort of best of set to go with it or a smattering of other hits, however The Wildhearts aren’t most bands so instead they offer an even longer set than the album and the crowd get to choose which songs they’d prefer to hear (mostly). What makes seeing The Wildhearts so amazing isn’t just the band themselves it’s also the crowd, You will rarely attend a show where the crowd has such a passion for the band as this, with almost every person singing along not just to the planned section of the show but also to the unplanned, the fact that all 23 songs played tonight are catchy as fuck helps a little also. Ginger & co. get straight to business and smash through the first 3 songs without a word, and what’s immediately apparent is that this is the tightest live the band have ever been, and in over 20 years, that’s some accomplishment. I used to listen to this album repeatedly and I mean till the tape barely worked anymore, but still, hearing it live is a real treat, especially ‘News Of The World’ one of my favourite songs which rarely gets a hearing live. So after listening to in my opinion the best album of 1993 live in its entirety, what could possibly beat that? Well a smattering of songs from the majority of their career might give it a try, 2 songs are offered to the crowd each time and the one that gets the loudest cheer gets played and a few slightly iffy decisions aside the audience got exactly what they wanted plus some. Highlights for me were ‘Hate The World Day’ which is a real rarity treat, or the mass sing-along to ‘Geordie In Wonderland’ the heavy as fuck ‘Urge’ or the most recognised b-side by any bands fans that they might as well have released it as a single ’29 x The Pain’. At the end of the day when all is said and done, that is what makes The Wildhearts great, the fact that they can throw in b-sides which are just as popular as the singles, they’re the Oasis of the rock world in essence, and after a 2 hour set they still leave you wanting more. This was by far the best concert I’ve ever seen, and wherever the future leads be it Ginger Wildheart Band or The Wildhearts, we can only expect bigger and better things to come.

Greetings from Shitsville
TV Tan
Shame on Me

The Miles Away Girl
My Baby Is a Headfuck
News of the World
Drinking About Life
Love U Til I Don't
Nothing Ever Changes but the Shoes
(vs I Wanna Go Where The People Go)
Just in Lust
(vs Got It On Tuesday)
(vs Dangerlust)
Hate the World Day
(vs Two-Way Idiot Mirror)
Caffeine Bomb
(vs Weekend (5 Long Days))
Weekend (5 Long Days)
(Played in error. Choices were … Red Light - Green Light or Beautiful Thing You)
Red Light - Green Light
(Winner of previous choice)
Vanilla Radio
(vs Sick Of Drugs)
Someone That Won't Let Me Go
(vs There's Only One Hell)
Geordie in Wonderland
(vs Mazel Tov Cocktail)

(extra song due to Lynn Vaughan's)
29 x the Pain
(vs The Revolution Will Be Televised)

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