It always tends to be a good sign when you arrive at a gig and there’s already a substantial queue outside, so it was nice to see there was already a decent-sized crowd gathered inside The Fleece by the time the first band came onstage.
It did feel like The Dead Betas took a little while to get fully into the swing of things, but their set improved as the night progressed. It was a little strange how they told the crowd on multiple occasions but neglected to share their name until a fair way into their set, which was an odd approach to take. However, they were an all-round good band and a great point of the night was when their guitarist and vocalists switched places for a song as it mixed things up nicely. It was a promising set from the talented five-piece and they are definitely a band worth checking out.
Up next was The Red Paintings and the first thing that struck me about this band (stage outfits aside) was the impressive string section. The violin and cello were excellently played, really nice and tight, and you could really appreciate the talent behind both players, the violinist especially. A highlight of their set had to be their cover of Mad World and what was great was the fact there were elements of both the original version by Tears For Fears and the Gary Jules cover, making it a good blend of the two.
It was only for headliners Mindless Self Indulgence that the room fully came alive, however. The Fleece was filled with cheers and screams as they took to the stage and by the time their second song Shut Me Up had started, practically the whole room was moving about and partying.
It’s difficult to know if the band’s frontman Jimmy Urine is a comedic genius or just a vastly annoying individual, however. On the one hand, he spent vast amounts of the show venturing round the venue and performing from whenever he could – at one point singing from inside the ladies toilets! – but on the other hand everything dragged immensely during his “phone call to God”, where he spent an inane few minutes prattling down a phone to talk to ‘God’ whilst telling the crowd to shush. We could have had another song instead of that!
It was a pretty decent set and some of the standout songs were Issues, Never Wanted To Dance and Faggot, with the crowd treating each track with as much enthusiasm and excitement as the last. At one point, Jimmy requested the house lights to be room pretty interesting approach to say the least.
The encore saw the room chanting for “the most beautiful man in the world” (a new nickname given to Urine earlier on in the night) to return to the stage in order for the encore to begin, before the band rounded things off with Straight To Video.
Overall it was quite a fun night, and it goes to show that it really makes the difference when the crowd are so into a show because the enthusiasm quite often spills onto the stage and into the band member’s performances as a result.