Like many, we were gutted last year when this impressive three band bill was postponed yet it was understandable; Knuckle Puck cited their own mental health wellbeing as the reason. Nevertheless, they’re now in better spirits and tonight they’re in Nottingham. To their benefit, tonight’s show takes place at the Rescue Rooms, a larger room compared to the Bodega which was pencilled for last winter.
Although the venue change is good for the bands, the lengthy queue outside while Movements (3/5) are starting the night isn’t good. Nevertheless for the Californian band, this a welcomed return to the UK having visited these shores for a headline run in the spring. Last year’s debut LP, ‘Feel Something’, proved to be a compelling set of emotive post-hardcore. This run of shows allows the quartet to display a short snapshot of it. ‘Colourblind’, ‘Full Circle’ and album highlight, ‘Daylily’ do enough to nicely warm up the crowd.
Minnesota’s Tiny Moving Parts (3.5/5) started 2018 strongly with the release of ‘Swell’. Blending their emo/math-rock origins with a melodic consciousness. While ‘Common Cold’ eases fans in, album opener ‘Applause’ is received well with a smattering of fans singing it back word to a smiling Dylan Mattheisen, who supplies flicking guitar riffs throughout. While the sibling pairing of bassist Matthew and drummer William Chevalier provide a sturdy rhythmic backup. Even though older songs are sliced in between, ‘Swell’ cuts such as ‘Feel Alive’ (with the crowd filling in Jetty Bones backing vocals) and fret-tapping frenzy ‘Caution’ receive a better response.
The aforementioned and beneficial venue change is clearly in Knuckle Puck‘s (3.5/5) advantage as the room is packed with a buzzing crowd. Straight away ‘Gone’ and ‘Disdain’ provide an explosive start with many fans feeding off the band’s energy.
Knuckle Puck somewhat surprisingly have a plethora of songs in their arsenal to pick from. Sure tonight we get favourable moments from ‘Shapeshifter’ and ‘Copacetic’, but throughout EP cuts such as ‘Fences’, ‘Bedford Falls’ and ‘Your Back Porch’ merely add to urgency the Illinois band stir up. Where Joe Taylor plays the role of the enthusiastic frontman, he’s backed by a radiant and upbeat band with Kevin Maida subtly impressing on lead guitar.
It’s clear the quintet are having fun, delivering song after song of anthemic and sincere pop-punk. Even though, ‘Conduit’ allows them to rein things in momentarily before ‘Pretense’ sends the crowd into a frenzy. By the time another old cut ‘No Good’ is delivered, Knuckle Puck are well in their stride.
It may have been unfortunately later than expected, but you can’t fault the quality of the three bands on show tonight. All of them are on their ascension, playing to bigger rooms with each visit. A feelgood night that didn’t disappoint.