Tonight, Salford’s Eagle Inn plays host to some of the most exciting bands in the indie psych realm. These bands are SlowHandClap, Springfield Elementary, HAMER, & OHMNS. Now I will mention here that the night before (GNOD – 21/02/19) was one of the best things I’ve ever seen. Therefore I had to limit expectations.
Unfortunately, due to the inconsistency of public transport I miss SlowHandClap, however, everyone should still give them a listen and look out for when their next show, because I know I will be.
Next up we have Springfield Elementary. A fascinating take on the sound of lo-fi garage, with an interesting vocalist that does not fail to impress, whether recorded in studio, or live. While looking like rejected Matt Groening cartoons realised, they still somehow manage sound like a cleaner version of Thee Headcoats, Even with the bass amp issues that plagued their set. Key songs were Doctor, Doctor, which showed the group as the well-oiled machine they can be, and 5 Second Rule, with an incessant groove that keeps everything in order, even with a faulty bass amp. If I were to compare them to a more contemporary group, imagine The Blinders, if they weren’t so egotistical and actually knew how to enjoy themselves. Overall, Springfield Elementary could do with a few slight touches to style and image to make them stand out, but for a band in such infancy to create such a noise, is always going to be something special.
Upon entering the venue I was halted by a charismatic man of Scotts dialect. After paying the suspiciously reasonable £4 entry fee, he brandished me with a green stamp that read ’You’re A Star’, ‘too fuckin right aye’ he says with a cheeky grin on his face. I was then left wondering how such a foreign treasure came to be at the Eagle Inn tonight. Then as the second band prepare to go on stage; I retreat for a piss, when the Scottish charm tells me to hurry up, as I don’t want to miss the next band. I head back to the venue and there he is, on stage. Looking like Dee Dee Ramone in his prime, with all the energy of every punk-rock front man ever to be. In a flash the group, consisting of three men (One as previously mentioned a Dee Dee Ramone lookalike, a bass being played by nothing but hair, and a drummer that decimates the ears), tear down the roof in the first few seconds. The vocals are something special, with a microphone that emulates that of a megaphone, alongside some wild ‘Gibby-tronix’ to melt the mind. The energy is akin to Oh Sees, with a frontman that plays every rock cliché in the book. I’m talking Townsend windmill and Hendrix gyrating cock, while machine-gunning the crowd. The energy of the band really rubbed off onto the audience, preparing for OHMNS.
OHMNS reside in a dark area of the UK, one, which I refuse, to mention as anything beyond the river Mersey is a wasteland. This probably describes where all the anger and aggression of OHMNS set comes from. The drums are anthemic and the bass is fucking loud. You can see your teeth rattle. It was a good sound, which my only criticism can be, is that it gets a little tiresome… This does however provide a soundscape for you to get lost in. I expect OMHNS to keep going, and I expect to see them in larger venues very soon. In fact I can see all of these groups in larger venues. If they all keep up at the same pace as their music, then you can expect to hear more praise about each one in the near future.
The beauty of tonight is that I took a chance on these bands. I went in relatively blind, deaf and hungover and can say that it was worth every second. It’s rare you can get such pokey little venue like Eagle Inn, and even rarer that you can pay £4 OTD, and be sonically blown away. This proves what I mentioned in the GNOD review; Salford has the best venues. The venues that put on the more interesting groups in a vacuous world of unoriginality. This, in turn, brings me very nicely to my next review.