Live at The Library on Friday, 10th June 2011
Propane Penny kick of the night with unashamedly pop-punk stylings complete with lyrics straight from the lonesome bedroom and a full array of guitar 'tack-niques'. There's a reason we all love Pop-Punk though and Propane Penny remind you exactly why. A cover of Eagle-Eye Cherry's now played-to-death 'Save Tonight' pleasingly manages to come out like Alien Ant Farm. It's clichéd to the full but they're entertaining enough to get by and what the hell, I enjoyed it. It'd be good to see them get more innovative though.
Over to The Asa Hawks for a spot of Country Pop who are digging right into the 'Ellen and the Escapades' vibe which is tugging at the scene at present. They find their feet in their second song, a rousing number which gently caresses the part of you that secretly loves barn dances. In fact they've got some well constructed tunes and the musical sensitivity to pull them off but among those of us bred on a steady diet of Math Rock, attentions begins to wane. That's not to say it's not good though: a spot more confidence and ingenuity and The Asa Hawks' endearing set would have maximum impact.
Next up and with plenty of confidence is British Racing Green who are named after a shade of car paint and ready with a veritable Dulux colour chart of Indie tricks. They strike me as a bit like a heavier Stereophonics with touches of Foo Fighters - particularly solid drumming and a pleasing knowledge of when to thrash out makes for a convincing set. They could do more to stand out from the crowd but for now the rough-edge vocals and ballsy performance more than keeps you on your toes.
Finally, Dry Pilot rock up with a marked return to the world of beasty riffs, thrashed out in true Led-Zep style. Fat grooves and throaty vocals, they come out at times like The Darkness without all that limp-wristed prancing - Justin Hawkins after a decent stint in prison, say. The strength of Dry Pilot is in the tightness of the rhythm section (some incredibly smooth drumming matched by filthy bass) and the unabashed confidence with which they perform. When the guitar cut out for a song and a half, the bassist/vocalist and drummer just carry on - that takes balls for a 3-piece. Cocky and Northern, they've got the 'tude, but there's still a sense that they're not quite as refined as they could be and once you've grasped their song formulas there's little to be surprised by. Still, for anyone mourning the decrease in proper riff-based Rock then rejoice, Dry Pilot have it more than covered.
Condiment rock, garage noise