Previously, I admit I haven’t been a massive fan of Eagulls, not that I disliked them, they just didn’t grab my attention straight away. So when the opening support act walked on stage my expectations of the gig went from relatively moderate to just complete hopelessness. ‘Americans’ were first to the stage (well, more like the arena floor), the duos set just seemed laced with nothing but system malfunctions and technical difficulties – we actually initially thought it was just a sound check until they introduced themselves, they weren’t to everyone’s taste for obvious reasons and the audience were left with a sort of ‘oh’ feeling – are they coming back when the equipment is fixed or was genuinely it?
‘Sea Witches’ were up next, another one that was not to everyone’s taste – and it showed, which I suppose didn’t help the amount of nervousness that was already echoing through each member of the band, the lead singer did eventually loosen up and began to radiate the slightest amount of stage presence, they weren’t all bad though, I’d very loosely compare them to The Pastels if I had to, the final song ‘Space Gun’ delivered a punchy beat and catchy guitar riffs – and it actually received an applause – bonus.
The next support was what really got the crowd going, ‘We Came Out Like Tigers’, a metal/’progressive screamo’ 4 piece band from Toxteth. What stood out was the subtlety and classical influences pulsing through each song, the silent moments, with a delicately picked guitar, mournful violin and hauntingly beautiful vocals from the drummer sent shivers down my spine, you could see and feel the atmosphere changing around you with each song, as opposed to the awkward stance everyone held previously. I think ‘unexpected’ would be the appropriate word everyone felt the minute they started playing, but by the end of the set they had everyone on their feet and loving it.
Eagulls, by now, know exactly what they’re doing, (of course) they delivered the most compelling set of the night. What we did got was the début album reeled out in such a rapid pace it was difficult to differentiate between songs, vital contemporary punk in the form of ‘Possessed’ and ‘Moulting’, the dark/political/disgustingly beautiful ‘Council Flats Blues’ and the stunning ‘Opaque’.
I’ve never seen this band live before, and the sound and mannerisms of the lead vocalist, George, to me, seems to have a lot of influence from The Smiths and Joy Division; so you can understand my surprise when a mosh pit formed in the relatively small crowd, they sounded amazing, but that was something I really couldn’t get my head round – either way people were left eager for more so I didn’t waste too much time trying. The fact that I couldn’t tell song from song is the possibly the only thing I could complain about, the songs sounded sort of ‘samey’. the all seemed to merge into one (obviously big fans of them would know, so maybe I’m being biased?). That and the fact that lead singer George seems to be trying his hardest to emulate Morrissey in every sense with his every borderline cocky attitude – but that seemed to go unnoticed by most, particularly after he came out with the line ‘it was way better here five years ago’ (probable sarcasm that wasn’t picked up on by anyone but never the less).
Liverpool Music Week and the offering of free gig tickets, along with The Kazimiers’ new Winter Garden has proven popular with music lovers across the city.