Lost Scenes, Time4Heroes, Talk is Cheap, and Friday’s Last Kiss (Box, 10-Jul-2009)

First, a complaint directed at bands who leave (and take their entourage with them) once they’ve finished playing: I understand you want to pack your gear, but give a thought to the bands that are on after you; last night there was never much of a crowd to start with, but Friday’s Last Kiss ended up playing to an almost empty room.

Gripe over, what is it with indie bands, particularly those from Stoke?  There seems to be an endless supply of them, and it’s starting to get difficult to say something different about whatever the latest example is.  I have nothing against the genre, but there does seem to be an awful lot of it about and as a result all I can really say about Lost Scenes is that they did exactly what they said on the tin — some jangly chords, catchy choruses, and a solid performance. They were good at what they did, but so are 90% of the others!

The next band, Time4Heroes, were only playing their second gig and it’s clear that they’ve not yet found their identity — to start with there were definite overtones of The Cure which then gave way to a sort of Bloc Party sound, before finally settling in to (you’ve guessed it) a more traditional indie feel. If they stuck more to the less trodden path they may have something, but it’s early days for them yet so I won’t be too quick to judge. (Next time they should also leave behind the guy in the sunglasses — he had too much to drink and starting throwing furniture about as the evening wore on.)

Talk is Cheap were up next, and they pretty much repeated their performance from last week’s Studio Promo; the stage at the Box is about half the size of the M Club’s, though, so cramming them all on there cramped their style a little, but they still had a lot of energy and youthful enthusiasm.  They would have benefitted from a larger crowd — people had already started to leave by this point, and while their own collection of hangers-on did a fair job it wasn’t really enough for them to fully engage with.

Finally, playing their last ever gig, we had the power-pop/pop-punk/indie sounds of Friday’s Last Kiss; I have no idea why they’re calling it a day, and it was a shame that there were only a dozen people left to witness it. Although they have some definite indie leanings they manage to stand out from the crowd with a brighter sound and less of a tendency to descend into whininess. A pity to see them go and it would have been nice to see the crowd hang around for their swan song, but apparently they all had something better to do.

For a Friday night it was a bit of a feeble turnout, but perhaps this is an indication that people want something beyond the usual random collection of bands or are suffering from indie overload?

(Again with the useless internet connection; I seem to live just far enough away from the nearest 3 mast that it doesn’t take much to reduce my connection speed to a crawl. I may have to switch to a different network — spending an hour trying to upload a single picture has sorely tested my patience, so words only for now and I’ll drag my laptop out and about tomorrow.)


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