Portico Quartet – Gorilla, Manchester

The basement of Gorilla has always been my go to for punk rock shows. From The Julie Ruin to Pissed Jeans, I’ve seen them all. Portico Quartet at the Gorilla was certainly a different vibe than I’m used to down there. I know the venue doesn’t just play noise rock numbers, but to see a different style in a place the mind has built as the haven for head banging and mosh pit bruisers, it’s kind of strange. Like how an assembly hall at school can be transformed into an end of year disco.

Never has a basement been so chilled to sweat within.  Continue reading

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Patti Smith – 02 Apollo, Manchester

The Rolling Stones Manchester show in June was a pretty huge event, some guy was even trying to sell t-shirts outside of my work. When I took a taxi the first thing they thought was ‘yeah, Mick Jagger & co?’ but no, not that night. Not for me, never for me. That night it was all about Patti Patti Patti. Most nights are, let’s be honest.
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Flat Worms – Soup Kitchen, Manchester

Another night at Manchester Soup Kitchen, another garage rock sounding band to enjoy, not like I’m complaining, I love them! They’re making the grimey Soup Kitchen the place to be, overtaking the Manchester Gorilla basement as the place for bands to make ears bleed. Though after going temporarily deaf at Metz, I was ear plugged up for Flat Worms. Of course the sound bled through, just like what these worms can do.  Continue reading

Screaming Females – Soup Kitchen, Manchester

A few years ago, April 21st 2015 let’s be exact, Screaming Females rocked out at the tiny Roadhouse shortly before the place closed its doors for good. My friend’s band was supporting much to my surprise (to the surprise of many), The Slovaks. They even thought I’d come out especially for them, which was kind of cute. The Screaming Females played to a rather small crowd, but the guitar feedback filled any gaps in the room. They were crunchy.

At the end of the set, a friend said to me ‘they’re good, but not as good as I thought they would be.’ I dismissed it at that point, but later I was kind of coming to the same conclusion. Screaming Females have stories about how wild they are as a live set, playing on top of tables, in the midst of crowds, right up there in your face. The Roadhouse is small, but they kept the stage, no antics on display. So of course, three years later, I had to go see them again at the Soup Kitchen, another chance for the basement dwelling legends to come forth.

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We Are Scientists – 02 Ritz, Manchester

After support act The Pale White offered up their blend of bland, cause for concern was there, I could feel it surging inside me. If the big support act sounded like they derived their sound from watching too many television adverts featuring hip songs, how would We Are Scientists play out? I tend to make a rule of ignoring the support acts if I’m either indifferent or disgusted by them, but when a Uni lads army was going absolutely nuts next to me, stomping their feet and mashing my boots, I didn’t feel so good about the main act being much different. That one song on Burnout Revenge was pretty decent though…

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