Pennsylvania indie-rockers Tigers Jaw have returned to UK shores for a headline run in support of their fantastic new album Spin. I went along to catch their date at Southampton’s best-known sweatbox The Joiners.
The job of getting things started on a drizzly Friday night is given to local ‘dirty pop’ outfit Faux, who certainly fit the bill with their blend of emo and indie sensibilities. They boast impressive vocals, instant catchiness and a technically proficient rhythm section. Their short and sweet set oozes the potential for massive things in the future, they begin playing to an empty room and exit stage to a respectably sized crowd’s rapturous applause.
Grungey alt-rock ensemble Muskets are a shot of adrenaline with their meaty guitars and battering drums, ordinarily their sound would be conducive to moshing, however tonight’s crowd are from the rowdiest this darkened little room has ever seen. Their set is lean and punchy with a fantastic dual-vocal assault at the forefront. It’s safe to say the Brighton four-piece have made a few new fans with their warm up slot tonight.
The much-anticipated headliners have to struggle with various sound issues throughout their first few songs, the keyboard refuses to play ball and a high-pitched shriek comes from one of the guitars. But they’ve been doing this a long time now and they’re able to style out these early issues with good humour and crowd interaction. Things start to go a lot smoother when the likes of June and Chemicals rear their heads, the crowd adoringly sings back every word and the band are noticeably touched by the love they’re shown. Escape Plan further stakes its claim to be the best song of the year as it fills the venue with its colossal chorus. The mere fact that the band exit stage to chants of “more, more” after playing twenty songs speaks volumes about just how adored Tigers Jaw are, and based on tonight’s performance it’s easy to see why.