Sat May 4th
Where do I begin? I’ve had the pleasure of listening to and reviewing Eureka Machines’ fantastic new album ‘Remain In Hope’ and been lucky enough to interview their singer/guitarist/writer/top chap Chris Catalyst. Yet, embarrassingly, I’ve never managed to see them live. Until now.
I had it all planned; keep a note of the setlist; be organised; enjoy the support bands. Venue and train tickets advance booked. Hey, ho, and if you will, let’s go…
Infuriatingly, I only caught the last song by first-band-on, The Dedwardians, and on this evidence alone, I have to see them again. Tight, rocking, with a post-modern twist, they looked good and sounded better. Sorry!
Next up were The Loyalties, who include in their number the busy Rich Jones, guitarist in Ginger Wildheart’s band alongside the ubiquitous Mr Catalyst. In spite of singer/bass player Tom’s self-deprecating banter, they are a very fine band. Catchy songs, good humour and some duelling guitar melodies abounded. I can only hope that the rumour of this being their last gig is inaccurate, as I know I’m not the only one here who wants to see them again.
And so, to the main course. This is where my planning fell apart. I can tell you which songs they played, but not in any order, because from the first note, I reverted to a 15 year old hopeless fanboy. Which, at 45, takes some doing. Yes, Eureka Machines really are that good.
Storming on with ‘Champion The Underdog’, it was clear that band and audience were having one hell of a good time. A quick show of hands proved that most of us here tonight had bought the new Pledge Music-funded album and were anxious to hear it live. So, we were treated to the monstrously catchy ‘Pop Star’, ‘Affluenza’ with added dance moves, the Rocket From The Crypt flavour of ‘None Of The Above’ and ‘Love Yourself’, which Chris shared that his mum worried might be about…no.
With so many great tunes, they even managed to play ‘Yeah, I Feel Lucky’ twice; the response song to God Damn Whores’ song ‘D’Ya Feel Lucky?’. Any band I know would be happy to have one truly great song, but Eureka Machines’ purple patch just keeps on coming. We get ‘The Story Of My Life’, ‘Being Good Is Okay…’, ‘These Are The People Who Live In My House’ and the mighty ‘Zero Hero’.
Tellingly, most people here tonight seem to know all the words. Eureka Machines inspire that kind of following. When the band ask for a moments’ quiet so that they can applaud the audience, you know that they mean it. What more do you want? This was genuinely one of the best gigs I’ve ever been to.