The Maccabees
@ Leeds Stylus

In front of a crowd very keen to make the most of their Saturday night, The Maccabees fearlessly took to the stage, looking like the typical restrained Indie band, with their messy hair, simple backdrop and 2.4 guitars. Opening their set in the same way as they open their album, “Good Old Bill” gently stirred the waiting crowd, so many of whom were crammed into the main viewing area that it was elbows-at-dawn to find any breathing space.

But halfway through the song, the tempo began to rise. Drums started up, bass kicked in and the bouncing commenced… and didn’t stop all night. Leading straight into crowd favourite “Latchmere”, the band swaggered around the stage like they were playing a homecoming.

Despite slurring between songs, Orlando Weeks presented every song just as it sounds on the album, and played devils advocate in the intervals. When the crowd started the now customary chant of “Yorkshire! Yorkshire!” he responded with a strongly pro-Brighton stance.

Throughout the night it was guitarist / vocalist Felix White who provided the most entertainment. He wandered around the stage, encouraged the audience and skilfully avoided the bouncers as they extracted crowd surfers who were unceremoniously dumped onto the stage, owing to a lack of a front pit. He was clearly enjoying himself.

Despite being up for some punk/rock/nu-wave, the crowd were equally appreciative of slower tracks, including current single “Precious Time” and “Tissue Shoulders”. “First Love” was clearly a favourite, while the opening notes of “X-Ray” brought a wave of pre-emptive moshing.

An enjoyable night – after a few festival appearances and another single or two, the band will be something special on stage.

Simon Middleyard