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I arrive at the Cockpit to find the place filling out nicely; the crowd are mostly teenagers with the occasional groupings of rock veterans generally towards the back. After some initial confusion when walking into the ladies toilet by mistake (and I can't stress enough that it was a mistake) and finding some girls painting each other gold, the plucky five-piece With One Last Breath take to the stage armed with an array of furiously crushing hardcore riffs and screaming vocals. With everything from their name, cocky demeanour, limitless energy, image and, most importantly, sound, they fit tightly into the hardcore cliché... but whilst watching them you have to admit that at least they're doing it right. Even down to the way they cockily pass around a bottle of Jack Daniels between songs. The music itself resembles Bullet For My Valentine but less poppy and with more going on in each song. This keeps the energy up and this is reflected in the crowd who are jumping and screaming more than I've seen for a support band in a long time. With a mosh pit even breaking out towards the end I think you can consider the audience nicely warmed up and ready for more.
Sunday 24th April 2011
The Cockpit in Leeds, UK
Reviews & Photography by Nicholas Dishington
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On first impressions, Never Means Maybe look like they're going to bring some softer rock to the table but it doesn’t take long before they’ve proved me wrong. Admittedly, their songs aren’t as dynamic as With One Last Breath’s but they still put on a good show. The contrast between the softer and harsher parts of their songs is definitely more blurry than you’d expect from a screamo band but they make up for this with some more complex than average song structures. The audience are suitably impressed, some obviously not as engaged as before but, overall, more mosh pits happening this time. As I watch they don’t really leave much of an impression, Never Means Maybe sound like so many bands you’ve heard before but, at the same time, not like any one in particular. That said, their eclectic mix of influences don’t clash as you would expect, instead forming to be something welcomingly familiar yet not striking enough to really hold your attention. All in all they perform energetically and the material isn’t bad, they just don’t feel quite complete yet.
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Having seen LostAlone supporting My Chemical Romance earlier in the year I’d taken away just two things: they were pretty damn good but it was hard to take them seriously when they look like a band consisting entirely of the brothers of Noel Fielding. Trying desperately to ignore their resemblance to the effeminate comedian it’s immediately obvious that they suit the smaller stage of the Cockpit. They hadn’t really explored the vast stage of Nottingham Trent Arena when I’d last seen them whereas this grungier, more intimate venue provides a better fit for the three-piece. Their straight-out rock sound is the least aggressive thing we hear tonight, often leaning towards indie-rock more than anything else but that’s no criticism. It sounds odd but the vocals, and in particular the gang shouts, have a glimmer of The Offspring but more obviously the sort of melodies you’d expect from a Beatles or Oasis song. They seem at ease on the stage and after playing to the size of crowds they have been recently you can see why. With endorsements from the likes of Zane Lowe and Bruce Dickinson, and the fact they’re currently writing a new album, I seriously doubt this will be the last we hear of LostAlone.
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With tonight being the eve of the release of ‘Inside This Machine’, My Passion’s latest effort, I think it’s safe to assume they’ll be playing a lot of fresh material. Bearing in mind the pleasingly original image they’ve attached to their new brand of dance-punk, along with what I’d seen in the ladies toilet earlier, it still came as a surprise when the group took to the stage covered in gold paint. The crowd go wild for the band and their bouncy performance; while the music has its moments of aggression the atmosphere is nothing but fun. Frontman Laurence René gets a noticeable amount of attention from the screaming girls in the front, not surprising considering his muscular, golden god-like appearance. As for the new songs, the already light mood is heightened by the more electronic, synthy style the band have further experimented with in the new material, in particular ‘Come Back To Me’ and ‘Seven Birds’, the former holding more than a dash of chillout trance and the latter with a very industrial feel. Of course, the Hitchin five-piece don’t leave fans guessing the whole time and give them a healthy dose of old favourites such as ‘Crazy & Me’, ‘Day of the Bees’ and ‘Thanks for Nothing’ although I get the feeling that a lot of the fans would be just as happy if the whole of ‘Inside This Machine’ had been played. Fanning the flames of the constantly erupting fire that is the crowd René and his band regularly interact with their fans, making contact, talking to and joking around with them. The last song of the night comes in the form of recent single ‘The Mess We Made of Our Lives’ which not only does its job perfectly by elating the crowd but, halfway through, the band put down their instruments and ask the crowd to part. The following scene looks almost biblical, but instead of Moses and the Israelites passing through the Red Sea to flee the oncoming danger, René and his band are engulfed by a sea of fanatical arms. The song itself has long since changed over to the dubstep ‘Deck Scar’ remix of the track; a party atmosphere Pendulum-like B-side from the recent single. Really, the show has been nothing short of fun and you can see why My Passion have built such a devoted fanbase.
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