Sugarmen headed up Alan McGee’s 359’s monthly club night, Getintothis’ John Gibbons got a taste of something sweet.
The 359 club night has already become a firm part of Liverpool’s musical calendar.
Alan McGee told us on the night he picked Liverpool as the home for the record label’s night because it was the “number one city in the country for music” with “about fifty good new bands in Liverpool” and he’s got two at the top of the bill in this, the fifth instalment of the night.
But well before all that is Rotherham solo artist Leon Fender Walker.
It takes us a while to get our head round him to be honest.
Leon Fender Walker at District, Liverpool
We’re aghast at how much one song Anna Bella is a rip off of Stella by Jamie T before we realise that’s the point.
He also pays homage to Bob Marley, with a few of the Jamaican’s songs thrown in.
We find him charming enough, but he gets audibly frustrated that the crowd prefer to mill around the bar and talk rather than come forward and participate. But in their defence it is early, and they’ve probably heard that the bar is just about to run out of Red Stripe.
The Black Tambourines at District, Liverpool
The Black Tambourines, on the other hand, don’t have to make any appeals for the crowd to move forward, their New York inspired rock demanding your attention from the off.
When in full throttle they sound like the Ramones but with better guitar solos. I’m not sure the shared lead vocal is a good idea, but everything else is great.
We want to join the band, but we’re not sure we can get to Cornwall for rehearsals. Maybe we can get them to move up here? Their set ends all too quickly, and we’re all left wanting more.
Go Fiasco at District, Liverpool
Go Fiasco have a lot of friends in! Their crowd of fans take over the front section of the crowd with something as close to a mosh pit as we are going to get tonight.
They make an impressive racket and they look terrific, although their drummer is a bit too well turned out for us, admittedly as someone who thinks a drummer in a vest is overdressed.
We’re not sure their songs quite match their sound yet, but as their oldest member is 21, they still have plenty of time to develop as writers, and they are certainly exciting to watch.
Sugarmen at District, Liverpool
When you are headlining a show like this it’s imperative to make sure you are the best band on show, and after about half a song it’s clear that Sugarmen are.
Still frightfully young themselves, they are astonishingly mature in terms of the songs they have written , and just as importantly, knowing exactly what type of band they want to be.
Having been at one of their very first gigs, it’s fantastic to witness how far they have come already, and how their onstage confidence has grown.
They finish on This Is My Life (And It’s Alright), a song we have heard before but which takes on new meaning for us tonight.
Like Rock N Roll Star for a rather famous Alan McGee band, it could become the ‘fuck you’ message to the world that drives them to national attention.
Pictures by Getintothis’ Simon Lewis.
Further reading on Getintothis:
Getintothis on Alan McGee launching 359 in Liverpool.