Leeds Music Scene

Gig review of The Red Pills + Resonance + AFNT + Yokohama Lights

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Reviewed on 19th February 2012.


The Red Pills

Live at The Library on Friday, 10th February 2012

Yokohama Lights aka Adam James kicks off tonight's 360 Club shenanigans with his acoustic laments and love songs about pretty things like skylines and sunsets. Occasionally he does seem a little untried on stage but the songs are well constructed and he is a pleasing performer to watch and an accomplished guitarist. His slightly whiny Kooks-y vocal delivery will not be to everyone's taste but he emotes well and like many of the best songwriters he can sing well enough to purvey sentiment effectively.

AFNT sound like a plethora of different 'alternative' bands throughout their set. Predominantly they play pop-punk inspired songs reminiscent of bands like The Audition but slightly grittier and with far more chunky breakdowns. Elsewhere we are treated to some strong Foo Fighters harmonies, a grungy guitar tone and meatier almost metal riffs. Vocally they are very strong and some of the heavier instrumental sections are excellent but several of the verses are below standard and the more pop-punk element of their sound unfortunately already feels a little dated.

Watching Resonance live is like a 3D education in all that is great about classic rock. Their music embraces everything from AC/DC's showmanship to the slow burning incantatory charm of The Doors. Admittedly the five-piece are not at their best tonight and it takes a while for the set to get going but 'Under A Whole Lotta Footsteps' (featuring an accomplished Led Zeppelin cover) shows just how capable they can be. 'Shaman' comes close behind with its strutting beat and filthy guitar line making it nostalgic and potent in equal measure. Resonance's performance is overblown without feeling bloated and has a wonderfully organic feel as the duelling guitarists play off of one another whilst the excellent (as ever) rhythm section provide a strong foundation for front man Jonny and co. to build on.

There are many superlatives to describe The Red Pills stage persona. Their antics, led largely by singer Tom Hey are energetic, entertaining, original and perhaps a little mad and in the past this has somewhat overshadowed the music that the band actually make. Tonight however The Red Pills deliver on both the music and the performance. The addition of a new(ish) bassist has coincided with them embracing a more bluesy tone which is now present in several of their songs complimenting the brattier Dead Kennedy's punk numbers nicely. He still takes centre stage (and floor) throughout the display, but as a band they seem to have matured without losing the humour and spontaneity that characterises them, and for that they should be applauded.



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4 bands associated with this article.

The Red Pills

Punk 'n' Roll Music


Manchester alternative rock band, now based in Leeds

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