The Vouch EP Launch Party @ Edward Street Club, Cannock – 19th July 2008

The Lodgers opened to a full room which comprised a mixture of those there to enjoy the bands on tonight and those out just to enjoy a drink with live entertainment. With curly guitar strings and jeans at half mast, the set began to the delight of many, however no sooner had the boys got the music pumping, a technical glitch left the lead guitarist without power. I can only state my disappointment at the guitarist’s handling of the situation which culminated in an unjustified rant aimed at the technical crew – despite the eventual reconnection of his own lead!

Once the problem was resolved and the set recommenced the great first tune had the cocky boys really owning the stage as they took control of the room. As the boys played on, the crowd poured forward towards the stage to suck up as much energy as possible from this five piece. The lead singer was somewhat frustrated with having to work with his fixed mic as he wanted to walk about. He did however relent and confine his energy to the tight stage space. The Lodgers sound is certainly fresh, and overall very good, but I felt that the initial problems left a bad taste in my mouth.

The Vouch had chosen a slightly uninspiring venue to showcase their EP, but this did nothing to diminish my enjoyment of the evening. They comprise of five guys from Hednesford who have been playing together since school, before setting up this band within the last six months. In this time they have appeared on Kerrang radio and gigged across the country including the Cavern Club in Liverpool as a highlight, in an endeavour to put themselves out there whilst also signing to independent label O.Y.M. Their first track “Them Bones” set the mood of what was to become a great night as the set unfolded. Tracks such as “I Begin” demonstrated the obvious influence Oasis have had on the band, but overall the sounds were fresh and original. “Not Newt Not Now Hes” had a definite summer anthem feel whilst “Come on Red” showed off the boys skills as they blended each others sounds perfectly – their weekly practice sessions paying off.

The music generated a great atmosphere and made me forget the grey skies outside. “Never Gonna Drink Again” was slightly ironic given the somewhat laddish behaviour of some of the punters, who certainly had no grasp of that particular sentiment. There was plenty of banter between the band and crowd which was sometimes a little colourful, but in the most part positive. The music inspired an atmosphere which interchanged from chilled out sounds to party mood as many of the locals danced to the tunes throughout. The final tracks ” Slip Away ” and “Clockwatcher” were brand new and well received by all as the evening came to an end. This was for me and many others simply a great set and the music was superb. I gratefully accepted a free CD of the EP which I couldn’t wait to play in the car on my journey back, but also went on to play at home that night and the next morning. These guys are just starting out and I think that they have a great future, with their upcoming gig “Glow” at the Stein Bar hosted by Emma Scott on the 26th July – I look forward to what the future has in store for them.

Review – Dave Edwards

Photos – John Mason


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