REVIEW: The Real People, The Sums and Orange Room at the Lomax, 17/08/2012

IT WAS a Friday night and a legendary Scouse line up was appearing at the Lomax. Shaun McCoy went along to enjoy three enthralling sets in a venue were the music is literally in your face.

First on stage were Orange Room, a 4-piece who merge together the styles of Oasis, the Beatles and the Who, into their own brand of indie rock. They started with Noise & Confusion a punky/indie number with a sharp riff and the southern US drawl of singer Lee Peers. Just Another Night Out was filled with vocal angst and tension accompanied by very rhythmic drumming and powerful guitars.

As well as the heavier edged indie material the band toned things down with the transcendent I’ll Stick Around an early Who/Beatles-esque catchy tune with a more laid back tone and sweeter harmonies. They are a commendable support group on what is an intimidating bill featuring two of the city’s finest groups – the Sums and the Real People.

The Sums strike while the iron is hot with a classic Smaller track Is, which Noel Gallagher originally played lead guitar on. Then they’re straight into the ferocious VegetableDigsy’s starkly passionate lead vocal is one of the best around. He may look like a bantam weight but he has the voice of a heavy weight. From seething passion to the more heartfelt Small Smile with fine harmonies from both Digsy and bassist Chris Mullin. A majority of their set features songs off their recent album If Only, plus a few new ones thrown in.

The Sums are a stylish outfit with plenty of depth in all departments – vocals, bass, drums and the slick lead guitar of Lee Watson. The big man has got such a powerful delivery of psychedelic effects and howling solos. They finished with a more rousing version of Who Cares, which is one of ‘the’ modern classics in my book.

From one classic incarnation to another – The Real People, lead by the inspirational Chris and Tony Griffiths. They opened with 20 Seconds, a track that sets the pace for an exhilarating set the audience lap up with fervour. The atmosphere whips up more into frenzy as the band delivered classic track after classic track such as People In the Telly and the sublime I Don’t Belong which is a vintage indie ballad by anyone’s standards.

You can see why the Real People have been such a big influence on other bands like Oasis in the Beatle-esque Some Things Must Change. The Griffiths brothers are great harmonisers and create anthemic tracks that know how to hit the spot. The Real People are one of those bands who attract new and younger fans all the time while consolidating their loyal cult following built up over the years. They have an array of songs to satisfy their audiences like the majestic Ocean Child showing a more laidback melodic approach. The encore featured three more crowd favourites including the Kinks-like toe-tapper Rayners Lane. Here endeth the lesson.

 

Words by: Shaun McCoy

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