LIVE: Knuckle Puck / Tiny Moving Parts / Movements @ Electric Ballroom, Camden

By Renette van der Merwe

When Knuckle Puck started out covering songs back in the cool autumn days of 2010, they probably didn’t think they’d end up releasing a split EP with Neck Deep and signing to Rise just a few years later – not to mention touring the world with original material. In fact, as they stood on stage at Electric Ballroom on Friday, pausing between songs, vocalist Joe Talylor confessed they never thought they’d be swapping out basements for venues in the UK and yet, here they were, feeding off the accumulating energy of an excited crowd across the pond.

As the Chicago pop punk outfit launched into ‘Gone’, their first song of the evening, lonely leftover confetti from a previous show cascaded down every now and again, as if dislodged by the vibrations of stomping feet and vortexing bodies all singing the words back at the top of their lungs.

Despite Taylor’s declaration that “his voice was fucked”, the evening went down a treat. Balanced by songs from both ‘Copacetic’ and 2017’s ‘Shapeshifter’ – all of which received the same amount of applause as fans proved they had no preference – the set showcased everything from the bobbing beats of ‘Want Me Around’ to the anthemic bridge of ‘No Good’.

What Taylor may have seen as a disadvantage, by asking the audience to help out with singing a bit more than usual, he actually added to the overall flavour of the performance. The crowd felt more involved, which given the capacity of the venue made for a more intimate show.

As a quintessential pop punk frontman, Taylor does at times come across a little rehearsed. Everything from his movements, appearance and inspiring speeches can feel a bit familiar – not that there’s anything wrong with it, except maybe a slight sense of déjà vu.

But then, they take a step back to slow things down with dreamy track, ‘Conduit’ and the vulnerability and authenticity of the moment makes the whole night more convincing and special, whilst also inviting a welcomed break before turning it back to eleven with ‘Pretense’.

Ending the night on ‘Everyone Lies To Me’ and ‘Your Back Porch’, fans were left satisfied by seeing three bands at the top of their game as Movements and Tiny Moving Parts smashed it in the support slots. Here’s to them, to pop punk, and the community it’s creating.