Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Cold Water Swimmers / C33s - Live at The Peer Hat, Manchester - Friday 21st June

An 'I was there' moment for all you gig goers out there!

                                                       Trust A Fox Photography

Cold Water Swimmers

The C33s

The Peer Hat, Manchester

Friday 21st June 2019

Last Friday saw a monumental gig featuring two bands that have been part of my Next Wave movement in Louder Than War. The scene at the moment is healthy as fuck. Take The Pagans S.O.H. doing a video with fuckin Shaun Ryder on their second release, Tinfoils, Callow Youth, Dirty Laces, The Empty Page, Witch Fever, Dermo's Time For Action, Narcissus, Def Robot, Adventures Of Salvador, even the soon to be revealed Stepford Wives. Shit a brick, the list goes on and apologies for any bands I've missed out here. Cold Water Swimmers and The C33s are smashing down the wall at the moment and breaking through. Friday proved this as I'm about to reveal......

                                                       Trust A Fox Photography

I arrive at the venue quite early and it's already buzzing with activity. Tucked into a side street just behind Stevenson Square The Peer Hat is becoming a popular venue for up and coming groups to air their noise. I see a few familiar faces around (no fuckin' namedropping on here) and I can't believe the amount of good photographers in the house. Definitely something in the air here. The C33s arrive on stage and kick off their Tarantino surf punk rock with style and are truly honing their live act with every performance. Cav Green slices his guitar like a grunge master, whilst Judy commands those drums like a banshee. Most noted for me tonight with these firebrands is the confidence of Ste Philips on bass. It grows with each gig and he can fuckin' play! There's a mosh pit going on that looks like it could explode onto the stage at any time. There's a couple of over enthusiastic moshers going a bit overboard and at one point are warned to calm down a bit. That's the power emanating from this incendiary threesome. They do a fuckin' slammin Manic Depression that rides out with squalls of feedback after a pummeling rock out session. They air two new tunes tonight that fuckin kick you in the face with their punk ferocity, especially the aptly named Harpurhey Hostility with chugs along frenetically with a blast, and the Motorhead like Big Winner which ends the set with proper punk fireworks. This lot are not going away anytime time soon with performances like that.

Next up are the ultra cool Cold Water Swimmers. Another band making a massive splash (fuck me...) on the scene in a totally different style from The C33s. They have a similar backbone to provide Chris Bridgett with his perfect band yet their material has style that oozes the experience of the musicianship. She's Falling Apart opens the set with that familiar guitar chug us Swimmers fans are getting used to, and Carrie and Selina keep to their punk ethics with a rhythm section to kill for. Stark post punk garage is the best way I can describe as they sound out on their own. The textures of the songs are hypnotic as are Bridgetts vocals, such as I'll Be Your Witness and the brilliant new Burn Your Idols which has a proper psychedelic sixties pop vibe to it but is smattered with the post punk minds of the band to give it a modern feel. Sounds fuckin great live. What is criminal though? Next track Summer Breeze (which Chris dedicates to my late mate Noel Hurley) is a stunner. It should be plastered all over the radio. It's a wonder live, and the trio fuckin nail it live. It's got one of those choruses that you can hear ringing out at festivals, catchy as fuck! A masterclass in songwriting which should be an example to any up and coming songwriter. They are that good tonight the crowd want an encore of course. What a fuckin' pleasant surprise n all. A barking mad cover version of The Cure's The Forest which is proper punked up and has Chris cranking up that axe of his with some wonderful noise resonating the area. Should be massive. If the night can't get any better what happens next makes it a night to remember for music heads. Ex Fall drummer (Fall Heads Roll) Spencer Birtwistle literally fell onto the stage and did an impromptu drumming session with a six foot plus Peer Hat regular (I forget your name sorry) on bass.

A weird ending to a gig I'll remember for years to come. Definitely one of the best this year for the intimate nature of it, as I'm sure both bands will be moving up to much larger venues very shortly if they can perform like tonight. A belter.

All photos kindly provided by Steve Hampson, Neil Winward and Trust A Fox Photography. Use of any of these images is illegal without permission.

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