Cavalcade got the night off to a solid start, with the boys from Newcastle pumping out their brand of energetic, well rounded rock to a small but attentive audience. With unique vocals and powerful stage presence especially from the keyboardist whose head and luscious beard were thrashing from start to finish. The boys put on a tight show and clearly know their sound and how to execute.
The high energy was then maintained by The Middle Names. their set featured only new tracks from their upcoming album. I was really surprised by just how loud and energetic their live sound was. Gone were the hints of folk that had characterised their previous work, replaced with a much more guitar-driven post punk sound. Tight harmonies from guitarist/keyboardist and lead guitarist added a refreshing pop edge, to the earnest, lyrics of singer and chief songwriter Ben Wells.
I was worried how Amy Rose could follow the intense energy of both Cavalcade and Ben Wells, but I shouldn’t have been as after the first bar her voice had me hooked. where the middle names bowled you over enthusiasm, Amy Rose and co sucked you in with soft dreamy sounds. Her vocals are hauntingly beautiful and the harmonies with keyboardist Julian Ainsly, deeply engrossing when heard live. The band were extremely tight and the levels were excellent, with each song building in texture and complexity but maintaining a very chilled, ethereal edge. (Single “Running” is an excellent example of what these guys are all about) The set flew by in what felt like minutes and the intimate crowd were transfixed throughout.