Live at Brudenell Social Club on Thursday, 20th April 2006
As many of the city's music fans descended on to the capital for the Camden Crawl, the rest of the Leeds faithful shrugged their way through the slippery streets of Hyde Park to the Brudenell Social Club where O Fracas were launching their new single "Follow Sue".
First on tonight and hailing from Leamington-Spa were the fittingly named Post War Years. Despite it being their first time in Leeds, their obscure mix of hazy intros and rocky upbeat riffs accompanied by shouts and wails thrown in for good measure went down well. It's pleasant enough to hear a band with one capable singer but these boys could all sing and accompanied each other remarkably well with the odd harmony slipped in. Final song "Counterparts" started out like a fairground ride caught up in a whirlwind with subtle vocals breaking through beneath the chaos. Think Gomez on mescaline and you will be halfway there.
Second on were The Pigeon Detectives. This Leeds based 5-piece have created a bit of a fuss of late with their new single receiving national airplay. However the fuss had begun long before that and was quite obvious by the rabble congregated at the front of the stage, not to mention the crushing at the back of the venue. There was pretty much a full house and everyone had deliberately arrived early enough to catch the support.
As soon as they jumped straight into first track "You Know I Love You", shambolic frontman Matt frantically lulled everybody in with his contagious stage presence. It was a matter of seconds before the mic stand has dragged away from beneath his feet and he was off. As were the rowdy group of Pigeon faithful bouncing around right in front of him. With their ridiculously catchy lyrics that had most of the Brudenell singing straight back at them The Pigeon Detectives sounded tight tonight, and so they should as they were heading off to support Barat et al for the Dirty Pretty Things tour the next day. They sounded fast, loud and on form as they burst into single "I'm Not Sorry" with some great punchy guitar sounds just about drowning out the crowd's wails. Between clambering about onstage Matt seemed to have perfected his mic swinging routine, rushing around like a kid overdosing on sugary drinks. This raucously chaotic performance showed the Pigeons' durability as drummer Jimmi took a speaker to his head, Dave's bass stopped working and Matt's trainer fell apart on stage, however the band most certainly didn't as they continued playing on at all times. Finishing with b-side "I'm Always Right", Matt encouraged the crowd onstage with him and The Pigeon Detectives brought the house down amongst their fans.
Finally, O Fracas stepped up on what was their single release night. Bursting into "Zeros & Ones", which showed off their incredible pace-changing ability and the lead singer clad in his trademark green tank top. O Fracas are an eclectic mix of unconventional and ambitious structures with edgy guitar riffs yet very poppy Alex Kapranos sounding lyrics. The B-side "Tarn at Tan" showed off very uplifting riffs and was spat out at a fast pace. The O Fracas maracas were being shaken furiously throughout the venue as the band performed "Forfeit", and we were treated to a three way drumming frenzy which triggered off a certain carnival atmosphere throughout the venue. As the space cakes were passed around it was time for the new single and "Follow Sue" blared out of the unsteady speakers. High tempo, upbeat, edgy and highly energetic the track mirrored the atmosphere and brought the night to a close.