Live at Joseph's Well on Wednesday, 30th June 2004
Well, well, well (ignore the early bad pun) this is the first time that I have ever been specifically asked to do a review, so maybe I am doing something right, and what better place to do my review than at Joseph's Well? Still the same birthplace to loads of young and up and coming acts from Leeds, or that first step on the ladder to breaking Leeds for bands from afar, such as Huddersfield, and this is where tonight's first act Negative Opinionz are from.
My first impressions when I saw them take to the stage were 'its gonna be one of those nights'. You know where you have the snotty little 16-year-olds living out their wet dream fantasies of being the next Blink 182. And sure, the members from Negative Opinionz were all about 16, and sure, they wore their NOFX/The Offspring/Green Day/Rancid influences on their sleeve but hey they ENJOY it, and that's what music should be about at this age, getting up on stage and playing mainly to friends and family. We've all done that first show.
What surprised me though was Negative Opinionz' confidence; they didn't seem to be nervous at all, like they'd played this kind of gig a thousand times before. So good on them. The only main criticisms that I can remember were that at the start of the set the drummer seem to be languishing behind the bass and the guitars in time, but he had definitely caught up by the end, and also that the set could have been a little more varied, because the best song for me was definitely the reggae-inspired 'Loss of Life'. However these guys have loads of time on their side to get writing more material and I hope to catch them again when the next play Leeds. 7/10
Now after the pop punk of Negative Opinionz, came Kilter to grace the stage. However, as Negative Opinionz had left the stage a lot of the crowd had left too, because obviously they thought that they'd paid £4 or £5 to watch one band instead of three. (Always boggles me does that with the audience).
Basically the main thing that anyone can say about Kilter, is that they rawk, maybe that should be a capital 'R'. However, this kind of rock does not posses me in any way to move or get excited because basically it's MOR grunge rock. You know the stuff - Nickleback, Tantric, Audioslave, but without that hammer hit! The stuff that's played really tight, with nice harmonies, nice riffs, by nice people just doesn't get me frothing at the mouth; besides, there are plenty of bands up and down the country who are doing exactly the same thing. It's just average. This all changed at the final song though, which just seemed to keep morphing into different parts of different songs. The killer blow that actually made my ears perk up though was a Mars Volta-like jazz section after a crazy punk bit, much better chaps. I'm all for that! 6/10
Finally to take to the stage All Its Worth, a band I've seen before, and most likely to see again. Talking to the band beforehand they seemed in good spirits and told me that their sound could be a bit more emo (claiming new influences of Thursday and Taking Back Sunday) since the last time I saw them. Also Pete had moved onto bass as well, since the line up changes.
One thing that impresses me with AIW is the fact 50% of this 4-piece is female. (Where are all the girls in Leeds rock n roll?). The lead singer Becki has good vocals but it does take a little while to get used to the nasally sound if you're not used to them. It's different, and it works like a treat.
Joey carries on thumping away on the kit in the background, nothing spectacular happens, but then again no mistakes, which is the main thing. A solid performance.
Pete keeps yapping away with the back vocals like a demented Davey Havock, and thunders round the stage like he has ants in his pants, which is cool, because he lets the music wash over him, and therefore becomes the music, and the Kirk 'from Metallica' look-alike keeps things tidy.
As far as what I could tell from the set, AIW haven't gone much more emo at all, they still seem to keep from the same influences of early Manics, 3 Colours Red, a bit of Placebo, and instead of TBS, or Thursday, now seem more like AFI. If I was going to be really picky with the set I would have to ask the two guitars to start to do different parts to each other, because the volume wasn't affected in any way by the same parts on guitars. just something to think about maybe. All in all, it was worth it. 7/10