I rather like Huddersfield’s Northern Quarter, which while it’s, let’s say, intimate, it has banging sound. It also has the advantage of being a short walk from LSF Towers, so travelling to a gig there is easy. So I walked down there to see DeadWax launch their new single ‘Run It’ and, with much anticipation, Fudge playing my home town.
But first up were Deepdiver. Deepdiver seem to do that ‘sometimes rather indie, and sometimes rather alt-rock’ thing. Not being a huge indie fan, I wasn’t that sure of some of the songs early in the set. This is very much a personal view – taking the objective music reviewer stance, this is a band who certainly can play and their songs are not the usual indie/alt-rock thing.
In fact as their set went on I started first to get what they did, and then really like what they did. That happens to me sometimes, I start off all ‘I’m too sure about this’ and end up all ‘actually they’re rather good, I like this’.
Having that that conversion I often wish I could travel back in time to the beginning of a set to listen with my new ‘I rather like this’ thing going on. This is clearly impossible. I have to wait until I can see the bend play again which I definitely want to do with Deepdiver. Until I see them again it’s hard to do anything too detailed but if you like a band who play great indie/alt-rock music go see Deepdiver if you get the chance.
I had been rather worried about seeing Fudge play second on the bill and in Huddersfield. I know they have lots of fans in Leeds but Hudds who knows. If I sound rather ‘invested’ in Fudge, I am, I love Fudge.
I needn’t have worried, from the get go they had a crowd clearly waiting for ‘hometown heroes’ DeadWax really going. This may have been helped, acually I think it was, by Cam’s epic opening stage dive. Remembering this as I write, it was rather a scary thing to see, he was aiming I think for some people I recognised from previous Fudge gigs. From that moment they had the crowd and the venue Fudge-ified. They do that, they make the crowd part of their gig.
Look, if you’ve been keeping up you’ll know that there is way more to Fudge than frantic moshing, stage diving and chaos. There is great music and songs. Songs with great words – words that are sometimes funny and sometimes make you think. It’s music for the head as well as the feet. They is fantastic playing from a band who really know their stuff. And there is, last but certainly not least, Cam; who as well as singing those songs, and he has a great voice, makes us all feel part of the experience (even me, standing there with a large camera glued to my face, attempting to capture the virtually impossible, the atmosphere of a Fudge gig).
And somewhere in the middle of their set was a new song, a song that I’m convinced had the word ten in the title – I may well be wrong, I probably am – but it sounded way good. And even though I’ve heard their songs a lot, I like them more and more every time I hear them. And I find it harder and harder to even try and be objective about them.
There was frantic moshing, there was one crowd member stage dive, there was Cam joining the crowd. The band held nothing back, they may have been playing out of their hometown and second on the bill, but you’d expect nothing less than that from Fudge, it’s all or nothing.I’ve said this before, and will probably say it again, but Fudge are a band you need to see if you haven’t already.
Before I plunge into reviewing DeadWax, I have to be honest. The last time I saw them play and wrote a review of their set, I was on the fence about them, I was unsure. Although hedging my bets I did say that the next time I saw them I’d probably love them. Predictly, at least for me in my head, I did.
If DeadWax are new to you, what they do is to take stuff from a variety of places – one moment it’s all bluesy, the next rap metal, the next funky as fuck, you get the picture – and mix them up into banging tunes. And shit this a band who can play, their lead guitarist, masked that night, is one hot player.
The result people is a maelstrom of sound that you just can’t help being drawn into, your feet just can’t help moving. The fact that their guitarist is great was easy to spot. I had to step back and listen properly to get that the whole band can play – the bass and drums set up a great groove. And the band’s singer has a really good voice – the band’s one slow song highlighted that.
But there’s more to them than that, it’s a live performance. And this is a band who give their all. The set is ‘can’t take your eyes off them good’, visually they’re compelling.
DeadWax, you have me converted. This is band who just play whatever style they want, and they just mix stuff up. Yet there’s a ‘DeadWax sound’ that makes their set hang together. This band rock. Go see them people.
All photos on this page © Frank Roper Photography – see more on his Facebook Page