Live at Brudenell Social Club on Sunday, 11th July 2004
The Holy Terror are four impossibly fresh faced youngsters apparently raised solely on a diet of the Slits and Babes In Toyland. The vocalist really takes steals the show, howling like a Banshee at times and purring like a kitten with intent at others.
Sample lyrics include "I've got no job" and "Check his pulse," all howled for precisely 2 minutes and all the while competing with their rock'n'roll, death'n'glory mantra. Their influences are as clear as the bright red, yes red leopard print pants, but the sound is as tight as said leggings. Think L7 and Elastica in a frenzied whirlwind of emotion and teenage angst and you're not far off.
Four brogue-sporting, sartorially elegant lads then take to the stage. They are The Rakes, or the English Hives as NME shall call them henceforth. Quirky, spunky and quintessentially garage-pop, their mock-mod posturing is cute and playful but underneath there is real bit and vigour.
Their "we just wanna dance" manifesto does exactly what it says on the tin, forcing the seated ordinary boys to shift and wiggle like there's no Monday. Their set is delivered at breakneck speed, as sharp guitar and throbbing bass romp through angular 60's rock. It's an up-tempo barrage of 2 minute pop gems which to their ears are 24 carat gold. Not far off the mark.
Industrial sized speakers are simply stacked on boxes whilst wheezing, retired men sit next door in the Working Men's Club, simply counting down the hours. These are hardly the most auspicious settings for a band to launch their career.
The Futureheads clearly couldn't give two hoots. "Can everyone move forward now, I don't wanna see any room for dancing," purrs the lead singer in NHS specs, before unleashing a jigging and jiving punk laden belter which sucks the expectant crowd in.
Every song sounds familiar, but in a good way. Snappy Beach Boy vocals and simply complex harmonies crash delightfully into the speakers as the four Mackem lads romp through their Jam sandwich with extra punk and attitude.
The only criticism is that it's slightly one paced, but it feels a little like berating Red Rum for being fast. It's plain, it's simple and it's damn good. The Futureheads have spoken and you had better be listening.