The Xcerts

The Xcerts

It feels nice to be stood in Soup Kitchen this evening, a pint in hand, knowing I have the weekend ahead and not much else on the agenda apart from watching bands and drinking beer.

Sadly, Soup Kitchen seems a little on the quiet side as I eagerly await tonight’s support, Nottingham outfit Kagoule. It’s been a good year for the trio, having toured the UK vigorously and released a bunch of killer singles. Tonight’s set they play with an intensity that is very engaging, as frontman Cai looks longingly into the audience thrashing out razor sharp guitar lines with a vocal style that sits somewhere between Billy Corgan and Brain Molko. Their overall sound isn’t too far away from Smashing Pumpkins and early Placebo, with some angular riffs and an ear for a good hook. Every track in the set is really well structured and they don’t seem like one of the many current bands making a retro racket because it’s cool, they have some great ideas. With a debut album in the works and due for a 2015 release, next year seems promising for Kagoule!

Tonight’s headliners are Brighton based trio The Xcerts. Haven’t just released a massive sounding new record, ‘There Is Only You’ and also come off a pretty huge UK/Euro tour with Scot-rock heavyweights Twin Atlantic, it’s been an exciting time for the boys. Tonight comes part of a rescheduled set of dates in support of the new record and although it may not be the biggest crowd I’ve seen at Soup, everyone in attendance is in complete awe of the band from the first note of the set opener ‘Live Like This’. The first three tracks come from the new record and it’s easy to see why everyone has been raving about this record, with planet sized choruses and incredibly strong, head bang to your sick beats. In fact, after head banging to ‘Kids On Drugs’, I already start to feel a bit light headed.

The set tonight is an excellent balance of tracks from all three records, and it’s great to hear some tracks I’ve not heard live yet, like a stripped back version of ‘Young’, the hit single from second LP Scatterbrain and the moody, reverb soaked grooves of ‘He Sinks. He Sleeps’, another favourite from that LP.

Towards the end of the set frontman Murray takes out an acoustic guitar to play ‘Aberdeen 1987’, a beautiful acoustic track from their first record. It might not be the pin drop rendition you’d expect, as there’s a group of friends singing loudly and making little quips in between verses, but it’s not annoying as such, there seems to be a feeling of excitement and energy in the crowd which is nice to be a part of and Murray seems really pleased with the jovial mood of his audience.

It’s great to hear some of the first album tracks tonight, the songs that made me fall head over heels with this band back in my Uni days. And every song is greeted with cheers, singing, head banging and just general elation. Tonight’s show truly shows that the little gigs are the best, as long as there’s people in a room enjoying and submersing themselves in the moment, I’ll be happy. The Xcerts are a truly superb unit; super tight and loaded with tunes and passion. Now everyone else needs to cotton on.

Kagoule Facebook | Twitter | Soundcloud

The Xcerts Official | 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.