Uncertainty was queried amongst onlookers throughout the Sugarmill when an unorthodoxly minimal sum of two musicians promptly bolted into their set; producing a sound which applies experimental jagged guitar riffs symphonized with interchanging drums that alternate between definitive rock loops and speedy solos, coordinated with a harmonious guitar and perfected to the ambience their music evokes. Pedro Don Key’s evident absence of vocal influence benefits the strength of their instrumentals and places further emphasis on forming a dynamic and varied melody, HifiDad. from their 2013 EP; ‘Das Boot’ was the most accurate example of this on the night, for its suggestive ‘Jazzy’ undertones and intelligently placed alteration of sound in different fragments of the song. The duo has two gigs coming up this forthcoming March in Manchester, at Gulliver’s Bar on the 2nd and Castle Hotel late in the month on the 29th so make sure you catch them soon!
Spring Yard invaded the stage collectively and rallied the audience forwards in awe of their boisterously energetic performance driven by the distinctive sound of their first EP; ‘Ease Town’ of which they paraded their best tracks from such as; Homebound which rippled the crowd with its shuddering combination of punk like crunching guitars and instants of softer backing instrumentals that spotlight the prevailing vocal of Alex Baskeyfield. However my highlight was, Up an Atom compelling similar crowd response; highlighting the impressive consistency in the 4-piece’s music so early on, with a characteristic sound matched with sparkling stage presence. Spring Yard are also currently gigging and with dates in the next couple of weeks, check their website for where you can see them next.
Soon following, hailing from the Black Country were God Damn, and were second duo of the night – however the raw volume of dominating noise they produce reflects otherwise. God Damn release a radioactive wave of pure grunge sound using explosive guitar riffs that brawl with the equivalently hefty percussion; all infused with fiery vocals. Though amongst the brutish sound of majority of their set lied the melancholy delight of, Dangle Like Skeletons with a contrasting subdued opening to the song that gradually builds towards a thunderous conclusion which exhibits the echoing passion in Thom Edward’s voice. God Damn is a diverse hybrid of all things heavy and is currently on tour so I’d ‘heavily’ recommend them!
After a night of assorted Rock, anticipation was ripe for locals Tussk who’s innovative twist on metal didn’t go unnoticed. Tussk’s unique grasp on the genre is truly captivating through a vigorous twosome of guitarists that enhance the melody of their tracks, whilst maintaining an astronomical level of sheer power in their instrumental, throw in the transitional vocals of Sean Beck and you have a metal powerhouse. And if that wasn’t remarkable enough they pull off an unmatchable stage performance that corresponds with the intensity of their music seamlessly, and to pick a song from their set that encapsulates all this is near impossible; bet my best bet would be Shark Sandwich. The changes in pace make this song unpredictably invigorating and undoubtedly my pick from their ‘Cougar Bait’ EP released in 2012 which earned them the warranted legendary status in the local area. It cannot be reiterated enough how much you should go and see these guys if you’re looking for something one of a kind.