Short Warning – Leeds Packhorse

By paul

I have to give the people at Leeds Rios a lot of credit, because they’ve managed to turn the venue into one of the best in Leeds. Small yet roomy, it has a nice-sized stage and a fantastic soundsystem. And while there are many, many venues in Leeds, Rios looks set to become an established player in the scene.

Anyway, I went to Rios to catch up with two of my own bands, so forgive me for being slightly on the biased side. Guildford’s OVER AND OUT remind me of New Found Glory mixed with the three-way harmonies of Midtown; they’re predominently poppy yet maintain a punkier edge. And the fact they have three vocalists mean they have such depth to their sound they can pull it off better than most. Add the fact main vocalist Kyle is South African and the band have a So-Cal edge which is natural and not as forced as many UK acts who do the same thing. The band run through most of the songs on their new EP, throw in the 30-second song to feature on Un-Scene 4, and then round it off with a slightly off-key version of The Beach Boys classic ‘I Get Around’. Energetic and a hell of a lot of fun, there aren’t t too many bands around that do it better. (8)

It’s DAY OF RISING‘s first trip to Leeds – although as Spaniards it’s actually their first visit to every city on this tour – and their Foo Fighters-esque rock blazes a trail among a sparse turnout. Despite a dodgy start during ‘High Hopes and Empty Homes’ the band eventually warm up and tear the place apart. ‘Destroying Dialogues’ sounds much better live than on record, but it’s the Biffy Clyro-esque ‘Olympia’ – set to be released on PT Recs later this year – which stands out a mile; a song which drives and twists and batters in a whirlwind of guitars and drums. They’ve had a lukewarm response since moving to the UK, but they’re a great live band and top guys and deserve a better response. (8)

SHORT WARNING have come a very long way in the last 12 months. Progressing from an average skate punk band into one of the UK’s premier pop-punk outfits seemed to come out of nowhere and their live show has progressed with equal amounts of swagger and confidence. Watching from the back of the venue rather than the front, the band seem to have developed an on-stage arrogance which is strangely compelling; frontman Carl has gone from being a little shy to brash and confident, making ‘Mr Bigshot’ and a number of other tracks sound better than anything they’ve done before. If they continue to make this kind of progress, they could be dangerously good… (8)