Having been consuming a leisurely pint at the pub next door, I arrived halfway through the first set. Oh Captive [6/10] were pleasantly surprising and reminded me a little of Twin Atlantic – only instead of the nasal Scottish twang they had a nice West Country lilt. For a first support act, they had some absolutely huge songs that wouldn’t have been out of place at the 02 Academy. The band performed their brand new single ‘Tricking Us’ which alternates between ethereal guitars and soulful vocals, and has some very interesting math-rock nuances.
Next on stage were Newcastle-based Boy Jumps Ship [6/10], a rock bandwith slightly more of a mainstream sound. With songs such as ‘Black Hearts Don’t Bleed’ and ‘We Won’t Burn Out’, as well as new release ‘Call To Arms’ (Kerrang! single of the week), there were some real catchy tunes which made excellent use of gang vocals and some skilled riffing. This band were good, however other than their long-haired guitarist crabbing and thrashing all over the stage, they didn’t grab much attention, and some of their songs seemed overly long.
After plunging the Exchange into complete darkness (and localised chaos when I walked into/headbutted someone) sibling outfit Marmozets [9/10] jumped up on stage and launched into their furious brand of math-rock.Kicking off with a heavy older song from their previous EP and then moving seamlessly to the ridiculously hook-filled ‘Why Do You Hate Me?’, the crowd needed little encouragement to form a mosh pit and begin headbanging to the throaty guitars and octopus-like drumming provided by young drummer Josh MacIntyre. Charismaticfront-woman Becca MacIntyre screamed her way around the stage in a short a set filled mostly with tracks from their upcoming debut album – the band described this as almost a warm-up or secret tour in our interview which you can listen to here.
Standout songs to watch out for are ‘Is It Horrible’ and the anthemic ‘Born Young & Free’. Also worth a mention is ‘Cover Up’, which was an awesomely defiant song about female musicians not bowing to pressures of the mainstream. During the penultimate hit ‘Move, Shake, Hide’, guitarist Sam leapt into the audience for an awesome solo during which the crowd circled around him like hungry sharks. Finally, Marmozets finished up their short but sweet set with the melodic ‘Vibe Tech’, which celebrates all their roadies and tech supports. Said tech supports helped Josh carry his drumkit into the centre of the crowd where he proceeded to smash the ever-loving daylights out of it, before balancing precariously on top of it in a grand finale.
Marmozets have really come into their own over the last couple of months, but if this tiny manic show was anything to go by, they are on course to explode into the alternative rock scene.