The Gullwings track Why Are We Always Too Late? is a more than apt description for last night’s events at Kraak Manchester. A late onslaught of hail, sleet and LOTS of snow across the North West meant we arrived just a bit too late at this venue hidden deep within the city’s Northern Quarter. Thankfully I was able to grab a CD giving me time to check The Gullwings out some more before I try and catch them live again, next time boys I promise!
Of the three bands playing this small space Mama Roux were the one band with whose music I was unfamiliar. Described as “the coolest soul/blues/jazz band in Manchester at the moment” I wasn’t sure I’d like what they had to offer, but they quickly dispelled any preconceptions I may have had once they took to the stage. From the first notes they played and the first words Mama Roux’s extremely talented female vocalist Tallulah Anton sang I was hooked, another prime example of just how many great local bands are out there if you take the time to listen. Their performance left me genuinely excited Mama Roux you’ve definitely found yourself a new fan.
On to the main reason I decided to check this gig out highly tipped Manchester band Velocets. Whilst 2013 may be promising to be a great year for music I’d been suffering from a gig drought so severe I was seriously considering classing the busker I witnessed on the high street the other week as a gig I’d attended!! Thankfully Velocets came to the rescue quickly dusting off those January blues with their explosive set.
Looking back they’ll tell you they had some major guitar mishaps on the night which I can’t say didn’t go unnoticed, but it really didn’t matter they more than delivered with this performance. As a Velocets newbie I was highly impressed for a three piece they certainly pack a punch. Kicking off with recently released track Sophie Velocets sounded even better live than on record, exactly how I like my bands. Stringing out a strong eight song set they had me wanting me more and more after each track, for a small band on a small stage they certainly made a very big impression.
Velocets may be a relatively new band, but they’ve certainly nailed their act a great mixture of music and banter, these lads already have such great stage presence a winning combination the on looking crowd certainly appreciated. Finishing up with tracks taken from their latest EP Tell It To Your Kids and Naked Velocets had definitely saved the best until last. Both heavy laden with drum beats, blistering guitar riffs and catchy vocals these tracks really got the crowd on their feet to the point where most of them joined the band on stage, I get the feeling this isn’t a rare occurrence!
2013 appears to be shaping up nicely for these three “Noisy lanky f*ckers” their words not mine, it’s hard to believe they have only recently put this band together. With some great gigs already penned in for this year keep an eye out for these lads and watch this space for more this may have been my first Velocets gig, but it certainly won’t be my last. The same can be said for the venue itself, Manchester is filled with great places to watch live music and Kraak is already up with there with some of my favourites. It’s fair to say last night’s event was a great platform for local up and coming bands, proving just how productive an event can be when people with a genuine love of music join forces.
Until next time keep supporting the supports, if you’re not already following a local band make this the year you do it really does make a difference. They’re out there in abundance, grab yourself one and listen to what they have to offer I promise you’ll be glad you made the effort. And if you need a helping hand what better place to start than with these three bands The Gullwings, Mama Roux and Velocets, go on then what are you waiting for?
Fi Carroll /@Dirtyroknroller