Live Review: Red Rum Club – Manchester

Red Rum Club

11 May 2019, The Bread Shed, Manchester

Words & Photos: Gary Lambert

red rum club gary lambertIf you have been reading Popped Music lately (and if you haven’t you’re very naughty), you will know that one of our favourite bands is Red Rum Club. The debut album, Matador, is an absolute cracker, but it is their live shows where the sextet come to life with a heady mixture of rock gig and drunken family party. For some reason it seems to this particular writer that the band save their best shows too for gigs in Manchester. They must drink some sort of special potion whilst driving down the East Lancashire Road as no matter what the venue, they turn the intensity and heat up as far as they can push it. The Bread Shed was the latest in a long list of sold-out gigs.

The first band out on the night was Cleargreen. Like Red Rum Club, they were one of the bands on This Feeling’s Big In 2019 double album (which I only realised at the gig is set in alphabetical order), and they lived up to the billing. At first glance, they may seem like just another Manchester band trapped in the nineties, but actually, they have a lot more to offer. Yes, there is an obvious influence from The Stone Roses, but with the elements of hip hop that are dropped into their sound, Cleargreen have developed a style that is going to get people engaged as well as dancing. I look forward to hearing more from them.

Now October Drift are a band to stick on your Must See list if you haven’t seen them already and if you have seen them already treat yourself to another trip. Their intense, heavy, and very loud live performance reminds me of fellow Devon band Muse before the stadiums and spaceships. Frontman Kiran’s desire to spend half of their set with the crowd is pretty soon going to leave them with an intense fanbase. People love it when you get up close and personal to them, and he seems to love going there. I have very high hopes for October Drift because whenever I watch them I think that it is a warm up gig for a large venue tour.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, there ain’t no party like a Red Rum Club party, and when a gig finishes with friends and family bouncing around on the stage singing Would You Rather Be Lonely without the slightest cheesy feel to it, it has definitely been a party. From the opening call to arms of Joe The Blow’s trumpet to the very last goodnight from their immaculate frontman Fran, the band played like their lives depended on it. It is impossible for their hard work on stage to not take you whizzing on their musical rollercoaster. Strangely for a six-member band, they sound almost streamlined and not a beat is wasted in trying to make it the best possible night. Whilst Fran obviously grasps the attention as all good frontpeople do, the rest of the band swagger with such infectious confidence that you feel like you’ve grown an inch during their opening song. If you watched a video without sound or context you would know that they are having the best times of their lives as there isn’t a second without a beaming smile.

 

Even though their debut album isn’t yet six months old, Red Rum Club make me excited for their next release. The confidence they seem filled right now needs to be captured. If it can be bottled too, we will all be having their best nights of our lives.

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