Live at The Library on Saturday, 21st February 2015
To quote De La Soul in their seminal 1988 work, 'The Magic Number', "three times one; (what is it!?/ One, two three!)/ And that's the magic number!" It's clear from this that there really is something nifty behind the number three. With magic and assorted sorcery aside, the rule of three does denote that there is a pleasance, that little spark we feel, at least subconsciously, caused by the very nature of any trio, regardless of its parts or what it involves itself with. As the saying goes, "omne trium perfectum", or, for us untrained classicists, 'everything that comes in threes is perfect'. Being in a three, or, a trio, a triplet, a trinity, a triumvirate or anything else moderately trialistic, does really seem to have something quirky and inherently that bit more attractive that any other grouping you may be less enchanted by. Because of this, and all this three-legged fun aside, when I was invited to to the 360 Club for a third time to watch and review, you guessed it, THREE bands, the whole look-at-how-bloody-special-everything-in-threes is didn't really cross my mind. Sorry. (Be honest, who thinks like that on a normal, day-to-day basis.) Exactly. It's a nice idea though. (Apologies for the spiel everyone/anyone, I'm a failed writer in training you see.) What did tickle my fancy on first glimpse, however, was the eyesome line up, irrelevant of the fact that there were only three bands.
The opening band [first out of three] was Hello Operator, a fetching group of musicians hailing from a simple taxi, train or rock 'n' roll tour bus away down the road in York. Classified by themselves as desert rock, a Californian predecessor loitering around the Palm Desert area before the dawn of stoner rock, they are a young band who have already worked out a dangerously cool and stylish aesthetic. Looking the part, this band's gentle fusion of drawn out and distorted guitar work and a darker sound makes for a rather heavy, imposing genre, with a subtle touch of heavy metal psychadelia thrown in. Perhaps even the highlight of the evening, Hello Operator are a personal favourite, and hopefully will be instantly recognisable within a few years. For a song that gives about the best musical synopsis of what they are about, try 'Palm of My Hand.'
The second act of the night were The Loose Cut, a local, Leeds born band with a brand of rock with a blues edge. Reminiscent of perhaps an earlier Kings of Leon, their sound was a funkier and more entertaining twist, guitar wise, on just normal heavy rock. A mention must surely be given to George Fayle, the leading vocalist who, for me, at least, sang with a style not unlike Mark Lanegan of the Screaming Trees, just with a little more, you know, British panache. When their tempo was raised as well, things got feistier, palms got that bit sweatier and a few more inches of pint were dribbled unknowingly as the crowd began to warm to their showmanship; think a modernised Joan Jett, just, well, a touch manlier in the most literal and least pejorative way, too. Try 'Come Around.' A well formed and rehearsed act with a sound leaning towards original, and one who I'm sure will be playing a lot more as time moves forwards.
To complete this trilogy whom had already vastly surpassed their always cheap ticket price (really, this place is one of a dying breed, do try and visit, if only for a pint and hurrah with the some music you may not normally awkwardly wobble to), were Those Delta Wolves. Notable about this four-piece was what seemed to be experience. Now, please do not see 'experience' as a thinly veiled byword for age, decrepit musicians or any sort of allusion to geriatrics. What I mean, rather, is while this band may not be the fallen out of sixth form college with a Squire Strat types at this stage, their experience and overall presentation rang true of a talented and expertly rehearsed band. The bearded bunch powered through a pleasing set of a harder breed of alternative rock, and for a newly formed band, exuded the swagger of a band years their senior. No questions to be asked about why they are consistently booked in the area then, I imagine. The prowess of the guitar driven tracks too was exciting to use the overused; the guitar solo in this made I'm sure others apart from me consider reaching for their air guitar and having a good old diddly-widdly-woaw-waa on the body banjo. Just like the old days. And, personally, if any band, including the other two seen that night, can make me, or any other [almost] mature man genuinely want to thrash, sing and pretend to play along next to other real adults, well, then, to me, that is far more enticing than something that is purely exciting just because it comes in a multiple of three.
Alternative blues rock from Leeds