Standing outside The Ritz on a perfectly clear winter’s night, the stars were twinkling in the sky, and I was waiting in eager anticipation, whilst also losing all feeling throughout most of my body! The doors opened and the fresh faced, trendy sneaker and denim clad crowd started to filter in. First up was the supporting band ‘Trailer Trash Tracys’, a four piece from London presenting their moody ‘kung fu’ genre. In a mist of thick fog and red lights the vocals of the androgynous looking lead singer Susanne Aztoria echoed out across the hall ‘You Wish You Were Red’. She gave robotic like jerks and aggressive sways to her performance as the rest of the band added to the dark and eerie sounds. Ironically singing of red under a red light, our photographer Mel really was wishing the total opposite, as red is a photographer’s worst nightmare. But it was later found out that due to Susanne’s light sensitivity red lighting can only be used on stage.
It’s time. The lights shot up with the screams and cheers from the crowd as The Maccabees swaggered on. Something quite electric had now altered the atmosphere. Starting off with tracks from the new album ‘Into the Wild’ and then straight into ‘Feel to Follow’ hands and the odd plastic cup were thrown into the air. With no time to stop the lads then performed some of their older material. The crowd were loving it and looking as if to almost take off, rubber soles are amazing leverage for bouncing!
An overwhelmed Orlando Weeks finally stops to ask, ‘You OK? The expected reply of cheers were given and then it was onto the next one. Now band and audience are in sync singing ‘Let’s take our precious time about it..’ but no, we’ve no time as they’re off again! Such an energetic performance and they’re obviously having the time of their lives. Hugo White played his guitar so intently as if it was actually a part of his person, occasionally squaring up to his brother Felix as they weaved sounds together. Rupert Jarvis, minus his usual attire of a hoodie, held a slightly more mysterious presence around the edge, but that’s what bass players do? Right?
The ‘one’ of the night for me has got to be ‘Pelican’, the latest single from the album. This is a track which upon my first hearing I loved and really plays favour to the unique tones of Weeks’ vocals. With the audience standing on each other’s shoulders they take it to another level under manic flashing lights and a faster tempo than recorded. So now rounding this hurricane off and coming back with an encore one thing in my mind is for sure, these lads most definitely aren’t playing cold. The rise of The Maccabees is upon us, and they are not to be underestimated! www.themaccabees.co.uk