Almost 10 years ago lying on that trampoline dying in my mates back garden, I never thought I’d survive 10 minutes never mind 10 years. It was a severe hangover after one of the better gigs of my youth which put me in this position, under the Hartlepool sun.
The Cribs had just blown me away, admittedly fuelled by alcohol, in one of my favoured venues where my musical influences began – Middlesbrough Empire.
Following their signing of a major label deal with Warner Bros back in 2006, the release of their third album, ‘Men’s Needs, Women’s Needs, Whatever’ , sent them into the mainstream. This year, 10 years on, they decided to remember the impact of it on their careers by rewarding the faithful fans with a full live performance from ‘Our Bovine Public’ all the way through to ‘Shoot the Poets’. Luckily for me, I got tickets to the Glasgow show at the O2 Academy.
Opening the night for the trio were first support band ‘God Damn’ whose metal no holds barred sound was a great explosive start for the fortunate early birds. 2 songs into the set and I was already sold on their sound, two of the on stage trio swapped around from guitar and effects while the raging drums blasted out. The lead singer had a great presence and with a good crowd, sparks will fly with this band.
4 piece Norwegian band Sløtface were the second support to grace the stage. They initially reminded me of bands such as Alphabeat and the Ting Tings but as their set progressed it appeared that they had their own style and attitude. Some funky basslines, choppy riffs and great vocals contributed to an easy listening indie pop sound, particularly their catchy first single ‘Magazine’.
As the lights went down and the Jarmans entered the stage, the melody of ‘Another number’ having been chanted to death by the crowd, Our Bovine Public brought a renewed enthusiasm to the room. The play through of the album was as good as ever with a sweaty crowd singing and jumping throughout. The commonplace video appearance of Lee Ranaldo for ‘Be Safe’ and ‘I’m a Realist’ were my favourite moments because of my love for the latter and the uniqueness of the former.
Praise from Gary for the Glaswegian crowd was repeated as the band explained it had been a long time since their last Glasgow appearance and 7 months since their last gig.
Ryan with his traditional rock and roll passion held back his destruction of the stage as best he could but couldn’t prevent the occasional stumble to the floor and disregard for the mic as pints were flying and moshing filled the floor.
Finishing the evening with a smattering of tunes such as ‘Another Number’ from debut album ‘The Cribs’, and ‘Mirror Kisses’ from my favourite Cribs albums ‘The New Fellas’ through to more recent tracks from ‘For All My Sisters’, including a number of the songs which have found their way onto ‘Payola’, their greatest hits album which also includes a number of rare unreleased tracks.
Ultimately it was a typically Cribs punk-like night which I did not regret attending one bit. It seems false to me that they’ve only been releasing albums for 13 years since they feel like a major part of my musical background. That is credit to their brilliant songwriting and talent for continuing to develop their generally raw sound into something that transcends time.