It’s always a winning moment when you first get into a band to discover that they’re playing near you that week. This is what happened when I first heard the well praised debut long player from Montreal based quartet Ought. I remember thinking ‘this is really cool, I wonder if they’re doing any UK shows’, and low and behold, I’m here to see them tonight at Sound Control as part of their current jaunt around Europe.

This is a double wammy for seeing bands I’ve just discovered. I was introduced to the super chilled college rock tones of ‘Alex G’ just a few days ago and here he is with a three piece backing band opening tonights show. Mostly playing tracks from his recently UK released LP DSU, Alex and band play as many tunes as they can fit into half an hour, each one a slacker-pop hit in the making. It sounds super loud and clear in Sound Control tonight and the guitar lines are particularly striking in the set. The modest crowd arriving to Sound Control all seem to be digging what Alex has to offer, there’s even a couple of guys next to me singing every word. Although it was quite a static performance, the tunes did all the talking here.

Main support tonight comes from rising Manchester outfit Kult Country. I think its almost been a year since I last this this psychedelic indie rock ensemble, and although I was impressed when I first saw them, tonights set is really impressive with some really strong songs. They’ve really upped their game on the songwriting front, and there’s some quite anthemic numbers in the set with soaring guitar lines and urgent beats. They also have a tambourine player which I think is a really cool idea and actually helps bring those driving beats forward and gets the band stuck into a solid groove.

I like the fact the the members of Ought are stood around on stage ready to play and the PA is still blaring out some upbeat indie funk, which the band happily dance around to as they await the thumbs up to start playing. It’s this playfulness that excites me about Ought and got me interested in their eclectic debut More Than Any Other Day. My thoughts on tonight’s set is very much my thoughts on the album; theres some great ideas and like how each track has a different vibe but in places the length of the tracks loose my attention somewhat. Most of the set tonight is engaging as the band play with spirit and energy, the crowd very much feeding off of this on from start with a rousing rendition of the dynamic record. My favourite tracks off the album translate best live for me; I love the scrappy, jangle guitar groove of ‘Pleasant Heart’ and the bass groove in ‘The Weather Song’ is pretty irresistible. I’m not sure if it is where I choose to stand, but the sound doesn’t blow me away it did for the other bands, but it’s the bands performance that steals it for me. Although I can’t say I was bowled over by the whole set, Ought did bring out some really memorable moments and for a new band are certainly ahead of the curve and songwriters and performers.

Ought  Label | Facebook | Twitter

Benjamin Forrester

I joined the Silent Radio family near the very start of my move to Manchester in 2012 and I'm still having the best time! During my stay here I've been in two noisy bands, had a not so noisy solo project, made a zine, started a blog and started a radio show. It's been productive to say the least and it's all been intersperse with a shit load of gig going and beer drinking. I would love it if you followed me on twitter @dr_brainless for excitable tweets about playing, watching and living new music.