The Newcastle Riverside has bagged yet another big name. It’s quite bizarre how big Marmozets have become, and I think they seemed a little shocked and excited by how things are going for them lately.
Having just been added to the bill for Download Festival this year and on the mainstage no less, they are truly on the rise. It was therefore no surprise that tonight was a near sellout.
Three-piece Bristol-based band, Thought Forms, were up first. Their sound consisted of a pleasant mish-mash of styles ranging from indie to drone; Shoegaze feedback even made a welcome visit in a few tracks. They have haunting My Bloody Valentine style (yet much more subtle) vocal melodies which made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up a few times during the set. Impressive.
Steak Number Eight
Okay, I admit this band was the main pull for me to attend this show having seen them at Newcastle Academy back in 2012 supporting Gallows along with Feed the Rhino and yes, Marmozets. What a bill that was! At that time I had only heard of Gallows, who I was and still am a huge fan. I walked away from that gig with a few new favourite bands. Most of the bands from that night have gone on to big things. One band you may not be familiar with is post-metal/sludge Steak Number Eight who were the band of that night for me, so I have high expectations for their set tonight.
So tonight I revel in their awesomeness again. The classic ‘Dickhead’ is a sludgy grunge number with some rather offensive lyrics, delivered with such angst and fury, which is counteracted in the chorus to screams of ‘BANANA!’.
Sludgy baritone guitar goodness rumbled every bone in my body. Standing next to the PA in the Riverside I was literally shaken as I stood there. I hear that they’ve been working on the PA system in the venue and it sounds better than ever – proving that this is the venue in Newcastle for heavy gigs.
We got a great mix of songs from across their three LPs. They ended their triumphant set on a high with an epic version of ‘Pyromaniac’. I just wanted more!
Anyway I’ve praised SN8 quite enough! Time for the headliners…
It’s a rather young looking crowd tonight. All of them have been thoroughly pummeled by the opening acts. They appear to be rather worked up and excited for the main act.
Marmozets have come on a long way since I first saw them in 2012. Now signed to Roadrunner Records, who released their debut album last year. Just how far they’ve come musically became immediately apparent during the first track ‘Move, Shake, Hide’. That pounding two note riff kicks in and boom! I’m impressed! The whole band seem to have evolved. Their sound is much bigger, tighter, with some great riffs and some powerhouse drumming from the wee lad Josh.
Vocalist Becca has become a powerful performer. She is full of character, roaming around the stage, captivating to watch. Her vocal style is quite varied; Karen O style wails, sing-along choruses and of course the hardcore screams. She also gave us the finger at one point, yet still managed to appear charming and a little cheeky. She really reminds of Jemina Pearl from Be Your Own Pet, who were a great little shouty garage rock band from the mid 2000s that came, conquered and promptly imploded.
There is something special about this band. As I’ve said they really have progressed immensely in such a short period. It’s scary to think how young they are, yet it’s exciting to imagine where they’ll head next.
Tonight they’ve totally won me over. A circle pit towards the end of the set was awesome to see, they are certainly a hit with the Newcastle crowd tonight.
They seem like they’re on the cusp of big big things. They deserve it. I hope the success doesn’t go to their heads and they carry on this path. My advice is go see them before they start playing arena-sized venues. You won’t regret it.