Slowcoaches, Monster Treasure, Jo Mary: Studio 2, Liverpool

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Slowcoaches

Slowcoaches

With Slowcoaches heading up a quartet of rebellious acts at Studio 2, Getintothis’ Daniel Bundy was there ready for action.  

It was a good night for punk in Studio 2 last Wednesday night. With a quiet venue but a very loud sound, four unique bands made sure to leave boot stamps on that strange, carpeted stage before handing over to headliners Slowcoaches.

Uncle Jane were first after a brief sound check.

“You got any reverb on those vocals mate?”

“Not when you’re talking. Unless you want to, but that’s weird.”

What followed wasn’t so much weird but a cross section of palatable punk, something you could groove to, which quite a few in the crowd did. Musically they were a tight three piece, the standout being some exceptionally swinging bass to carry the sound.

Yet if one could cast a criticism, lyrics about Jesus and losing your mind, are a well trodden field in the genre. You could see their confidence growing as a live band as the set went on, but they’d do well to reflect on their individual and collective personalities to help make a sound truly their own.

Next was Jo Mary, a highly entertaining five piece including a lad with a raincoat and tambourine.

“If anyone’s in council tax debt, we’re a friend of yours.”

Wearing winter gear on stage might be all the rage these days, but when said tambourine player can take his jeans off and draw absolutely no attention to himself while doing it, you see first hand a competent stage performer and not just another in the queue.

Peter Bentham talks Free Rock & Roll, the spirit of punk and doing it for yourself

Neckbeard, Little Hitlers and All My Friends Think I’m Jesus are fun, thrashy tunes, switching from that foreboding grunge sound to speed punk without a second’s warning. Thoroughly enjoyable through the set from start to finish, held together even through a kick pedal breakage by tight music and the confident mick taking of the man with the tambourine.

With two female vocalists singing at a high pitch, offering sweet smiles and thank you’s in between songs, Monster Treasure brought an eerie quality to the night.

“We’re Monster Treasure. From California. USA.”

Their origins showed not just in the sunny disposition of the band, but the fast riffs too, invoking Black Flag and JFA with their intensity. Their two singer’s harmonizing helped distinguish the sound, giving it an otherworldly, supernatural quality. Truly, a refreshing change in a genre known for grit and in your face.

Finally, Slowcoaches capped off the evening and were anything but.

With a break neck speed and a vocalist whose maniacal smirking and stomping captures madness in the punk spirit, this set of screeching feedback and looped vocals might incite a riot with a bigger crowd. Yet for the one that was there, they shook and danced, felt the raw energy course through their bones right until the end.

“We have a record that came out a year ago. That’s a fact. This song’s not on it.”

Theirs was an unpredictable set list, impossible to know when to breathe and when to dance. The singer’s mania was absorbing, engrossing, to the point you didn’t realize it was all over and the instruments were coming off. Spent.

The crowd then left, smiling, amped up, exhausted but satisfied thanks to a fun showing in the mid-week.

Images by Getintothis’ Lucy McLachlan

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