It’s gig number one of 2017 for me and the Full Moon club in Cardiff’s infamous Womanby Street is the venue. It’s a free show arranged by the charity Heads Above the Waves, a non-profit organisation that raises awareness of depression and self-harm in young people and promoting positive and creative ways of dealing with the bad days which was founded by Junior drummer Si Martin.
Opening the show are Cardiff alt-rock quartet Montreux Fires. Still a relatively new band, they put on a good show on the tiny stage and have the crowd interested. Vocally and musically, the band are tighter than the previous time I saw them and we are treated to a new, untitled track alongside their pretty awesome cover of Heathens by TwentyOne Pilots.
Next up we have Swindon pop-punks As The Sun Sleeps. They’ve just released EP As Good As Gold so this is the perfect opportunity to get the tracks out there live. Vocally great, however the stage is too small for any sort of movement or high energy that you would expect from a pop-punk group. The tracks are catchy, the guitars are loud and they put on a great set.
Last but not least we have Junior. The Cardiff pop-punks have every word sung back to them as they open with A House That’s Not Quite Home from 2015 EP Juniorland. Again, the stage size limits the energy that is known to occur on stage from the trio, however, the crowd surely made up for it with everyone off their feet throughout the set. The dual vocals of Matt and Mark complement each other and sound great. The set stops just past the halfway point with Mark crowd-surfing through the room before the compulsory game of limbo. The set ends with They Don’t Make Them Like Kelly Kapowski No More to the delight of the crowd who had requested it multiple times throughout the set. If you like your old-school pop-punk, this is definitely a band for you with hints of a Blink-182 influence throughout.