Live Review: The Third Wheel Tour, EBGBs 30 October 2018

The Third Wheel Tour

E.B.G.B.S, Liverpool, 30th October 2018

Words: Daniel Burton
Photos: Gary Lambert

As soon as this tour was announced, I was buzzing from the thought of seeing three of the best prospects of this time all on the same bill. This tour really does show off what the UK music scene has to offer with the bands coming together from three very different places in Edinburgh, Guildford, and Sheffield (in stage order).

The trio of young bands were in the middle of a tour which was taking them up, down and across England and Scotland, and they arrived in Liverpool on a cold Tuesday evening. Despite expecting the basement venue to be warmer than outside, someone had preemptively turned on the air conditioning before the audience had turned up, so it was indeed considerably colder inside. As a result, I was even more looking forward to the bands starting so some of that precious body heat could be generated.

Retro Video Club

Kicking off the night in spectacular fashion and in fine form were the Scottish Indie Rock band, Retro Video Club. With singer Liam having the typical hearty and gritty sound you come to expect from a Scottish voice, he managed to draw the whole audience in to feeling like a part of the band.

Combining this voice with joyful guitar sounds in tunes like ‘Heart Brigade’ and ‘1993’, the group were able to bring the crowd closer to stage and get them into the mood for the night. With some similarities to the likes of General Fiasco, The Cribs and The Strokes, it is easy to see these young Scots becoming an even greater band in the future.

BlackWaters

Second on the bill of this great night were BlackWaters. Bringing an endless onslaught of high tempo songs that gave no rest to get your breath back in between, the band took the audience on a nonstop rollercoaster of energy and rocking tunes for 35 mins.

Whilst their records have more of a slightly grungy indie sound, their live performance has more of a Slaves meets Green Day feel and hangs onto an eighties post-punk rock sound.

Coupled with this, their frontman is more of a poet, like John Cooper-Clarke, than a singer, and it is this combination that gives BlackWaters their unique style and makes a live set of theirs one not to be missed. From their debut single, ‘Moon On A Stick’, released in 2016 to their latest EP, ‘People Street’, released this summer, this band have a great collection of music and I look forward to what more there is to come.

Despite really enjoying the first two bands, I couldn’t wait to see the final band. Having seen them a number of times over the past year at various festivals, I was excited to see them at this intimate venue. For this leg of the tour, the last band on stage were the Sheffield music scene’s latest wunderkinden, RedFaces. Maintaining a cool swagger throughout, it made their performance sound effortless to the point that it almost felt as if the whole show was improvised and it was all instinctive and second nature to the lads. With only 5 songs released so far, it was no surprise that is was a relatively short set, but it was probably the best 30 mins of my week.

RedFaces

Towards the start of their set they played their debut single, ‘Kerosine’. This is an upbeat feel-good tune with a spacey bass line at the forefront throughout, and this was the song that ensured the crowd were well up for the rest of the night. During the song, it struck me that RedFaces could be seen as if modern indie met vintage Elvis, or possibly even earlier rock and roll. This is mainly due to the slightly unorthodox style of front man Harry and his outstanding stage presence and showmanship that is startlingly reminiscent of The King of Rock and Roll himself. This quality is echoed by the rest of the group in their demeanour on stage and is one of the main reasons that I like them and I keep going back to the band.

By far the best song of the night was their latest release, ‘Way Down’. This really was a treat to everyone in attendance. Captivating the audience with an irresistible singalong tune that should be on everyone’s indie banger playlists – it’s certainly on mine and all at Popped Music.

If I could only play someone 10 seconds of RedFaces’ music to get them hooked, it would most definitely be the opening bass line of their last song of the night, ‘Take It Or Leave It’. It is an upbeat and simple, yet marvellously addictive tune, and as soon as it started it really seemed like the whole crowd’s heads turned to the stage and all of their ears moved closer to the speakers as if they had just been told it was a free bar all night.

From the first bassline, I was instantly gripped like it was the prelude to an explosion of sound, and despite having heard the song a million times, I was stood listening as if I had never heard it before and was just begging for the song to kick in. I honestly feel that this song epitomises the maturity that the band hold both in themselves through their stage presence and their song writing.

Coming away from this gig, it was clear that they are a bunch of best mates and that they interact with the crowd as if they want to be everyone’s best friend, and it is this professionalism that makes me sure they are destined for success. With this group of lads still being so young yet having achieved so much so far, I really do have great expectations for the future. Forza RedFaces!

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