LIVE: Creeper / Boston Manor / Hindsights / Ghost Cub @ Joiners, Southampton

By Reece Weatherley

One band you may (definitely) have been reading about, hearing and seeing across the glorious internet and various magazines recently is Southampton’s own Creeper. 2015 has been an absolutely incredible year for the band – from supporting bands like Misfits and Moose Blood, to playing to huge festival crowds at Warped UK and 2000 trees – and it all accumulated to a special, one off, sold out Halloween extravaganza in their hometown at the Joiners; a barrierless and intimate venue.

Upon entering the venue, you instantly got the feeling that this was going to be a special night. The ceilings were draped with Halloween decorations, along with subtle hints of theming that just added to the atmosphere – including an in-house radio style commentary on the night. First on were local band Ghost Cub; a casual band, but the high energy and good humour gave off a more fun atmosphere, opposed to other local bands who don’t get much of a turn out and no one seems to be in to. With ‘Rope’ being the most notable song of theirs, it was genuinely a pleasure to catch their alt rock rhythms live, and be prepared for them to grow in the Southampton scene.

After the release of ‘Cold Walls/Cloudy Eyes’, it has been nothing but upwards for the Berkshire-based bunch in Hindsights, and a supporting slot on this special show was more than deserved. Coming out dressed as Mystery Inc., it was a truly a great performance, especially when you consider that recently they added a guitarist, with Benio now focusing on lead vocals. For things still being quite new to the band, you wouldn’t notice in the slightest bit – it felt natural, and each song flowed flawlessly. Playing songs like ‘Cold Walls’, ‘Out of My Skull’ and ‘Cloudy Eyes’, they did keep their set list focused on their newer songs, and rightly so after such an impressive album. Judging by the crowd reaction, everyone thoroughly enjoyed their set and there’s no doubt that Hindsights will be massive soon enough.

Next up were Boston Manor – a band who have grown from being a small band, to being signed to Pure Noise Records and achieving various touring support roles, all simply due to them releasing genuinely good pop-punk songs, a feat of which is extremely hard to do so in such a newly saturated scene. They also are a band who came out dressed as the combination of a certain prime minister and a certain farm animal, proving that you don’t need to be serious all the time as a progressing band. Their performance was certainly no joke, as soon as they started the crowd reaction/participation rose to a level that hadn’t been reached so far, with such songs like ‘Wolf’ and ‘Here/Now’ going down an absolute charm. However, one song completely stole their performance – towards the end of the set they played ‘Trapped Nerve’ (taken for their upcoming release in ‘Saudade’) and it was clear from the moment it started that it was going to be a hit from the EP. Give it a little time, and watch Boston Manor become one of the biggest UK pop-punk bands out there, just watch.

With a dramatic introduction made just for the night, and dressed with wounds and cuts, it was Creeper’s time to take to the stage. By this point the atmosphere was incredibly lively and distinctive, with smoke taking over the stage and a lot of the room. They opened with ‘VCR’, taken from their self-titled EP, and as soon as the songs began the crowd once again took it to a level that hadn’t been reached yet; you know it’s a fun show when Doc from Back to The future stage dives, shortly followed by Batman.

Balloons, smoke, stage dives and songs like ‘Gloom’ and ‘The Honeymoon Suite’ (taken from their killer new EP in ‘The Callous Heart’) proved that there was no better way to spend your Halloween night than to be in that room, in that instance. Performance-wise, Creeper were flawless and highly interactive to the extent of which it was hard not to get involved. With an encore of ‘Novena’, it ended the night with an emotional sing a long, but one of which that bookended the night and gave the band a chance to reflect on how far they have gotten, especially when their first ever show was at the same venue. They deserve to be progressing this quickly, and this performance proved why. It was set perfectly to be a fun show and not serious at all and it was exactly that; just a night of really impressive UK bands and lots of Halloween fun.