Monday, February 27, 2017

Live Review :: VANT - The Wardrobe, Leeds - Feb 25 2017



The Wardrobe, Leeds

February 25 2017

Words/Pictures: Danny Shackleton

The first thing I noticed about Leeds venue The Wardrobe - which tonight was playing host to a sold out VANT gig - was how typically underground it seemed with its basement setting and low roof; just how you’d imagine a small venue to be and a great place for this gig to be held. Another thing that was apparent was the vast age range present for a relatively new and young band. With a lot of under-18s strongly in force, it shows that either VANT are making loads of good tunes which young people can wrap their ears around, or that the politically charged nature of their lyrics is resonating even more with the younger generation, especially in today’s political climate. But most likely it's both as VANT are very easy to get into with their catchy tunes.

The night's support band Dead! were very lively on stage - with their guitarist strumming away on a table in the crowd at one point - and although weren’t quite my taste, were enjoyable nonetheless. Once the main event arrived on stage, there was a massive cheer and from the first riff, everyone was jumping around and getting involved. Some, however, seemed to get a little too involved, which caught the attention of frontman Mattie, who was driven to tell the larger members of the crowd not to crowd surf as it was crushing all the little ones. At one point, during 'Karma Seeker', the song was stopped as the bouncers were trying to get to a stage diver but the lead singer explained that it was all just a bit of fun and the song restarted, as Mattie exerted the crowd to "sing it even louder this time".

As they work through some of their now standard songs from the debut ‘Dumb Blood’ album, each are conveyed with a raucous force. ‘Mess Around’ was introduced as being about Mattie’s old best friend ("My best friend is a dirty dog / He's a smoker, joker, brother, lover, gift from God") who is now a cunt - allegedly - which I’m sure is something we can all relate to. The encore was preceded by Mattie coming on stage and “making it rain” with loads of fake dollar bills inscribed ‘dumb blood currency’ before ending the show with a wonderful rendition of 'Parking Lot'.

All in all, this was a great gig and a very sweaty affair from a brilliant live band who are destined to go a long way in this business. I for one cannot wait to see them live again. Peace and Love x

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