Gig Review

Been a while since I posted anything, so I thought I’d ease myself back in with a gig review.  I went to one of my favourite venues in town, Mello Mello, with my good friend Nicola to see The Midnight Ramble. We also caught Midnight Playground who opened the night. The Dead Formats also played and the headline were The Computers but we’d retired to the back of Mello Mello by this point so I’ve only reviewed the two bands we actually paid attention to!

Friday May 31

Two bands I’d never seen before and I was really looking forward to sampling something new. I wasn’t disappointed.  Midnight Playground had already started when we arrived (seems to be a trend in Liverpool recently – rigidly run timed set lists that everyone sticks to – who knew musicians could be punctual!). I really liked the sound coming from the stage straight away. I never remember the names of songs (even for bands I love so new bands have no chance with me sadly) but what I remember is a huge sound. Fabulous guitars backed by good solid drumming.  The vocals were a little bit wooly in places but overall really good. I wrote down the line “Run, run, rabbit, run” – this might be the title of the song, it might just be the chorus, it was my favourite song of the set. On investigating the band’s Soundcloud page I discovered the song is called Run! and it still sounds as great as it did on the night. I can’t decide who the singer reminds me of, something has me thinking of The Cure and The Manic Street Preachers.  The set was over far too quickly for my liking, which is the danger of these multi band nights, but I thoroughly enjoyed the sound and will be looking out for their next gig with anticipation.

Next up was The Midnight Ramble. A seven piece band – this amount of musicians always makes me happy – you know you’re going to get a big, complex sound when you can see that many people taking to the stage. So we had 2 guitars, a bass, a saxophone, a trumpet and drums. And the most amazing backing vocalist.  She really was so much more than a backing vocalist. Her energy and sheer enjoyment at being on the stage was obvious and infectious. From the get go this 7 piece made an amazing, raucous, joyful din. It was a loud, brash, grab you by the collar sound. The lead singer has a stunningly powerful blues voice, reminiscent of Joe Cocker, something which only came to me the next day when I listened to the band’s EP on a loop!  The brass section was perfect – just the right mix to add some soul into an otherwise heavy blues sound. Again, the set was over far too quickly and I was left needing to hear more! Stand out tracks were Last Thing On My Mind and Black Dirt, both from the EP.