It would seem the old "save the best for last" adage proved to be true at this year's Northside Festival, as a headlining set from Welsh post-punks Future of the Left would wrap things up for us last night at Europa. Highlights included...
ME YOU US THEM
Me You Us Them were hand selected by Future of the Left to open the show, and I was thrilled to see one of our favorite local bands offering the support. The quartet delivered a blaring and intense set, playing at their most aggressive. Perhaps inspired by their Welsh pals, frontman/guitarist Ryan Reesey did nearly as much shouting as he did singing, sounding like a long lost grunge icon in the process. Their knack for combining blistering shoegaze and viscous grunge impressed the large audience from opener "Big Time" til the tribal rhythmic stomp of closer "Loving Like Lawyers". In between, the guys played big badass versions of personal favorites "Pretty Nettles," "Wish You Luck," "As of Now," and the ultimate grunge throat shredder "Research". We've been anticipating the next MYUT record for some time now and with each passing show, we're only getting more excited.
FUTURE OF THE LEFT
There are few bands in the world I'd rather see then Future of the Left, and Sunday night it was real clear as to why. The Wales based quartet bit with sharp wit and intense rhythmic trudging, making for an intensely aggressive blast that you can't help but move to. The band wasted no time in getting the audience rowdy, opening with favorites "Arming Eritrea," and "Chin Music" before offering a dose of their latest record The Plot Against Common Sense. The grimy and catchy "Beneath The Waves An Ocean" and the massive "Sheena is a T-Shirt Salesman" followed before the band took their first pause, as Andy Falkous greeted the crowd with, "Good fucking Sunday to you, Brooklyn." The band continued their aural assault with the shout along "Manchasm," before bringing Me You Us Them's Reesey back on stage to join them for "Failed Olympic Bid". The audience was thrilled as the band launched into "You Need Satan More Than He Needs You," "Polymers Are Forever," and Mclusky's "To Hell With Good Intentions," sending the already apeshit audience into a wild frenzy. "I Am The Least of Your Problems" followed with several lengthy microphone cutouts mid-song. Falkous asked the audience for an exact percentage of what they missed and when someone replied 50% the band proceeded to play the song again, with an added intensity as though they hadn't just finished the same song as Falkous cynically quipped, "That's what the Smashing Pumpkins would do." An energetic and enthusiastic vocal performance were highlighted on "Robocop 4 - Fuck Off Robocop," and the brutal grooves continued as the band played a duo from Curses "The Lord Hates a Coward," and "Adeadenemyalwayssmellsgood".
Wrapping up the mayhem (though it seemingly had only begun), Falkous announced something along the lines of "We're going to play two more songs, the first is so short if you blink you might miss it and second you will have definitely aged. This one is a Supergrass cover" before bursting into Mclusky's classic "Lightsabre Cocksucking Blues" and the chaotic finale, an enormous, destructive, pillaging of "Lapsed Catholics" that found the drumset taken to pieces and brought across stage as all hell broke loose and everyone in the audience had realized they just saw something truly special.