Firstly, in an entirely irrelevant observation; allow me to state that there is an unsettling proportion of extraordinarily tall people in attendance tonight. In other news, The Little Kicks appear to be having a bit of a Cliff Richard moment over on the stage. Crooning “It’s such a shame that we don’t talk anymore”, tonight’s downsized version of the band (two gents, two acoustic guitars) churn out song after song which seem to be predominantly based on love and loss. The two lads look genuinely surprised at every appreciative noise from the audience, which is sweet in itself. Confusingly, their MySpace page boasts the headline ‘Upbeat disco-rock’, which is possibly the complete antithesis of tonight’s performance. Not that this is entirely a bad thing. The vocal harmonies and fragile melodies are charming and honest, with a particularly lovely cover of My Morning Jacket’s ‘Golden’.
Aswell as boasting a rather excellent name, Jesus H. Foxx play a pretty suave set too. The five-piece are very much a rhythm-driven band, with each song containing exciting tempo changes, punctuated by a peppering of muted yelps and the odd “hey!”. Prominent drum rolls (from no less than two drum kits) injects a bit of a Vampire Weekend feel to the set, but the most apt description of the band is perhaps a catchier version of The Pixies.
Keeping with the tradition of impressively-named bands, local favourites We Were Promised Jetpacks take to the stage and it suddenly becomes impossible to move. Immediate comparisons to the likes of Bloc Party and The Editors are unavoidable, but as the set progresses, deeper layers to their music are unearthed. Standout tracks ‘Ships With Holes Will Sink’ and ‘Quiet Little Voices’ (punctuated with catchy ‘oh oh-oh-oh’s) are mini-epics in their own right, and showcase vocalist Adam’s strong, clear voice. A captivating band with a sound that belies their youth, We Were Promised Jetpacks are well and truly ready for an explosive lift-off.