Live at Packhorse on Friday, 9th August 2002
Despite some speculation as to the true identity of The Rebellion Threat Kills, tonight's mysterious support band, it's clear that much of the enthusiastic audience at the sold-out Pack Horse venue were given a tip-off that Sammy USA were the act in question. And, from the outset, they were enthralled by a tight and highly entertaining performance from one of Leeds' most popular bands of the moment. They seem to have a whole host of great indie guitar-pop tunes to hand, all suitably augmented by understated keyboards.
Next up were fellow hotshots Kenosha, who are also causing a bit of a stir following their recent Futuresound success. Whilst clearly inspired by Weezer's college rock sound (they are, lest we forget, named after Weezer's home town), Kenosha showed that they possess not only an ear for a damn fine tune, but also have what it takes to impress in live performance. "Malibu", in particular, was one of the stand-out tracks on the night, and they are likely to impress more than a few casual observers at the forthcoming Leeds Festival.
As was to be expected from such a well-regarded live act, retro punk outfit Lorimer did not disappoint with a typically spiky performance. Ignoring several critical bellowings from a group of middle-aged skinheads in the audience, who were clearly trying to recapture their misspent youth, each of the band (with the exception of frontman Phil Savage) took to donning a black handerkerchief over their mouths for the duration of the performance, possibly as a tribute to the costume antics of one of their undoubted influences, The Damned. Indeed, in a time currently dominated by the commercial bubblegum punk-pop drifting over from the other side of the pond, it makes a refreshing change to experience some decidedly British-sounding punk rock, especially from a band who are still young enough to make it, rather than revisit past glories. Lorimer definitely have the attitude, the tunes, the witty lyrics and, on tonight's performance, the image, but the big question is whether they will find some to market them to the brainwashed record-buying public of today.