Now this is an odd one.
Always is when you come to a gig solely to see the support band and have only a vague knowledge of the group that is on the ticket. No matter, though, that’s the position that RTM finds itself in this evening.
Here because we absolutely love Turbowolf, we saw the headliners support the Foo Fighters about a decade ago and rather lost touch since, whatever else happens though, watching openers The Coat Hangers again will not high on our list of things to do.
It is a terrible name for a band, but one which, unfortunately matches their music. A female three piece, they are a new wave/punky affair, but one which to these ears is devoid of any tunes that we can find. They clearly do have ….Trail of Dead as fans, though, as bass man Autry Fullbright joins in on a couple of tracks – and the ladies clearly love the headliners too. Just not ones for us.
By contrast, Turbowolf very, very much are. Brilliant on record, but even better live, their half hour is a veritable tour de force. Essentially a collection of what appears to be collection of Bristol hippies they make a glorious racket that sounds like metal being played a weird synth over the top, topped off with the catchiest chorus’s you can think of. Except you can’t think of them, which is why Turbowolf exist.
Frontman Chris controls the whole thing expertly, and they reel off tracks from their astonishing debut record, like “Severed Heads,” “Rose For The Crows” and the incredible “Read and Write” with considerable aplomb. They also find the time to unveil a new track “American Mirrors” which tells you that album number two is going to be a belter too. They finish off with “Lets Die!” and surely must have won themselves several hundred new fans. If you haven’t seen them make sure you do, as they quite amazing.
As RTM had shelled out our cash to see a band other than the headliners, we had already had our money’s worth by the time …Trail of Dead hit the stage about 15 minutes late. When we saw them with the Foos all those years ago we thought they were ok but not worth getting excited about. That is a view that still holds true. Although they are afforded a heroes reception by the crowd.
It’s easy to see why they are cult favourites too, intense, dark and surprisingly heavy it’s a decent guess that they are the type of band that if you are a fan of offer much. For us, though, they lack a little bit of charisma and many of their songs get to be a trifle samey.
They are not helped by sound and equipment problems, in particular, Conrad Keeley struggles with a mic stand and gets himself extremely angry. The faithful, however, lap it up and rightly so, but for us the evening was all about one band, and Turbowolf absolutely did not let us down.