In usual circumstance, I’d have simply tacked this on to the review of Wavves, who were headlining. But whilst both they and Mazes were amazing, the standout act was Leeds’ Spectrals, who opened the bill. Their performance deserved far more than 50 words at the start of a review of someone else and it’s only a matter of time before people start taking a lot more notice of them.
On stage, they’re as relaxed as they are cool, strumming their way through an already impressive array of songs. It’s startling just how natural it all seems, especially for such a relatively new band. Between songs, they even manage to make some forced ‘banter’ seem ironic, like you’re in on a little joke, and though the crowd was thin to say the least, the few who managed to make seemed appreciative.
Though supposedly a one man act, Spectrals expand to a four piece for their live set and it works wonderfully. Bedroom artists have a tendency to falter somewhat when it comes to actually performing in front of real life people, but there’s not a trace of that and the rag-tag drumming providing a perfect backing to a style of music that’s laid back whilst still sounding hurried. Whilst it all sounds superb on myspace, in the flesh it’s an absolute treat, and it’s upsetting that the band weren’t given more time – though the inclusion of an enthusiastic Billy Childish cover hints that a lack of songs might be to blame for that.
Whilst there’s a bit of the no-fi scene to them, it’s exciting to see where they’re going next. Whilst many bands that stick with fuzz can justifiably be labelled as ‘just noise’, this is sound with a lot more depth. Whilst headliners Wavves are often said to be hit and miss live judging on this performance, there’s little chance of the having to worry about such flak.
Spectrals – It’s okay (not to be okay) (mediafire)
Spectrals – Rot with me (mediafire)