Live Review: Dead to Me, The Arteries, Our Time Down Here + Gunpowder Plot – The Star and Garter, Manchester – 23/08/12

Although tonight’s show is up stairs, it feels like a compact down stairs boiler room, the heat of which is abused by the first band of the night who are attempting to deliver a tight set of no-nonsense and no thrills punk rock. Despite a stiff engine faulted start, Gunpowder Plot from Wigan eventually warms the room with an entertaining set of banter and strapping first wave era style punk.

Opening swiftly with a chant of sorrow and loss of innocence, Our Time Down Here present a great set of energetic melodic punk rock. There’s a real sense of urgency about their performance, not just in what you see through their actions and hear in the fast hex filled notes, but most prominently in the poetic nature of frontman Will Gould’s lyrics who sings with such passion, a feeling that he shares with his fellow band mates who play superbly acting as a driving force for Gould’s sorrowful words. Despite only having a small number singing along, the band sure has caught the attention of their audience and has won themselves some new fans.

Welsh punks The Arteries are a perfect balance of hooky hard rock tinged riffs and harmonious catchy choruses, a combination that comes in what can only be described as an enjoyable event of leaps and bounds. As well as providing an indulgent supply of old material such as ‘Three Cats’ and ‘Capture the Flag’, the new songs that are played seem to be a growing improvement on the dynamics of the band’s sound. An exciting year ahead for the band? Very likely indeed.

Dead to Me face two challenges tonight; the first is a rather dormant crowd, and the second being the technical difficulties displayed by disobedient microphones. Regardless of such hazards, the band overcomes this by giving it their all in their performance through sweat and grit. With a blistering set of punk songs with addictive choruses and one liners, and their own sneering banter and persuasion they successfully manage to get their audience moving with a mosh and a few sing alongs. As the night’s conclusion comes to a draw with the help of fan favourite ‘By the Throat’, the band finally accomplish a decent enough show to get everyone in the mood and feel satisfied by regardless of the uncontrollable slip ups they and their audience have had to endure.

3.5/5

Words by Aaron Lohan (@ooran_loohan)

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