Gig review: Alias Kid, Vendettas, Benson, The Contravenes at The Library, Leeds

Alias Kid

Alias Kid

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Leeds quartet The Contravenes epic, workmanlike indie makes an efficient ice breaker to this 360 Club showcase, with singer Denny Parker’s untutored, open throated bellow a key feature.

By contrast Benson have just one gear, but it’s one that drives a relentlessly pumped up, good time soul/ska rock hybrid in which the energy levels are not allowed to drop for one second. A pile driving rhythm section, blaring horns and singer Jordan Clark’s amiably lairy bonhomie make for exhausting fun.

It’s obvious where the sharp dressed trio Vendettas draw their inspiration from well before they flag it up with a cover of The Who’s My Generation as their final song. A liberal dose of more edgy strains of late 60s psychedelia and garage make them more than a mere tribute to Mod greats past.

The main attraction arrive late (for reasons beyond their control), set up their own gear without much fuss and after a perfunctory sound check start playing.

It’s an inauspicious start, particularly as this Manchester outfit Alias Kid come blessed with the patronage of indie svengali Alan McGee, founder of Creation Records and as such midwife for seminal bands like The Jesus and Mary Chain, Primal Scream and Oasis.

While the soundman sorts out the mix you can hear the strong influences of other Manchester bands (Stone Roses and Oasis in particular) as well as the kind of driving psychedelic riff machine Primal Scream delivered so well in their prime, a mix that probably would appeal to McGee.

But at the point Shot Through morphs into Anarchy in the UK something almost audibly clicks and it all comes together in a roiling wall of guitars and slogans that is all the band’s own.

Revolution Sometime, their best song and potential anthem for the summer, piles on the pressure and carries the enthusiastic crowd on past midnight.

Alt-J have just released their third album, Relaxer.

Music interview: Alt-J on the new album Relaxer