Mazes’ debut album (reviewed in this issue) is a delightful summer romp that embodies youth, spontaneity and an exuberant charm, and tonight each is expelled with equal gusto. They are an inventive and expansive three-piece that never really show the restraints of their members capacity. They play fast and loose, but with a sense of urgency and proficiency that makes them exhilarating and precise without being calculated. They balance the ferocious numbers with the reserved ones and it’s a sludgy pop-drenched joy.
Spectrals roll into town with a changed line-up since their last visit and an additional keyboard player, and as a result they sound beefed up, their doo-wop charm often turning into a raucous racket. Bizarrely, since the release of Alex Turner’s new solo EP, there is often a similarity that runs through tonight’s proceedings, helped along by Louis’ northern baritone croon and jangly melodies. However, Spectrals are a relatively idiosyncratic lot amongst an abundance of other similar acts, and tonight their natural charm shines through. In a venue getting hotter by the second, their sun-drenched pop is a refreshing breeze of nostalgic guitars.
Best Coast share the same man power as Mazes, but somehow lack the vivaciousness. The use of guitars and bass for the melodies prove the most stimulating concoctions of the evening. Best Coast have got a knack for pop, the irrefutably endearing Boyfriend is testament to this as they slide into its sweet and infectious opening. As the tales of romance and lust continue into the sweat-soaked night - if occasionally merging into one by the fiftieth Be My Baby drumbeat - the crowd lap it up like the depleted souls they are. Collectively, the evening was a joy, the acts embracing and complimenting one another in a communal atmosphere.