Fucked Up with Eagulls
Sunday October 30, 2011
Sound Control, Manchester
The lofty attic space of Sound Control is sporting decorations of the season as we arrive for what promises to be an evening of uncompromising loud noise. Also in the spirit of things are tonight’s support Eagulls, with the Leeds fivepiece sporting a range of amusingly coloured wigs and women's clothing.
Having had the pleasure of their company a few times this year already, it’s a familiar story once the show starts, with the four musicians producing a ferocious racket while singer George swaggers around in front of them spouting idiosyncratic bile down the microphone both during and between songs. The songs that pack the biggest punch are still the infectious guitar wall of 'Possessed' and the quite brilliant 'Council Flat Blues' with its slow build-up into an explosion of furiously-delivered lyrics. The raw appeal is there for all to see, and if the band build on the start they’ve made to their career, it will be a long one.
Fucked Up follow to rapturous applause a while later, with the rest of the band launching straight into a trademark wall of noise before Damian Abraham joins them and promptly heads straight to the top of the barrier at the front of the audience, where he will spend most of the next hour. Ripping their way through a high octane beginning, it is no time at all before he is shirtless and lent into a throng of adoring fans getting them to shout along with him. Indeed, it seems that most of the room want to pack into the space immediately in front of him.
Musically, it’s a set that draws from all parts of the band’s long career. While Abraham’s antics draw inevitably draw attention, it is the ability of the other five members of the band to but on a superbly tight live show that makes them so good to watch. They deliver sub-three minute raw punk efforts such as 'I Hate Summer', and a blistering encore of 'Generations', alongside longer sections where the layers of feedback-drenched guitar lines carry you along in a haze.
It’s the man with the microphone that makes the show just so entertaining though - be it his between song japes, stories of sniffing Justin Bieber’s trousers, or the various things North America gets up to on this 'devils' night'. Or his habit of running round the crowd giving out high fives. A costume competition also provides an amusing interlude, won by a man dressed as the gimp from Pulp Fiction. The world of music is all the better for Abraham's way of putting on a show, and may he be back on these shores again before too long.
words: Steve Welch