Storming the Castle
The Castle Hotel
This was the latest of the Mr Peeps presents gigs in association with YO Clothing (love the clothing I'm a size large in tops if you are interested!).
It would be easy to walk pasts the Castle Hotel as it sits between the larger brasher fronted establishments on Manchesters Oldham road. You enter into a busy front bar with a corridor leading to an outdoor smoking area and a door with a classic Mr Peeps poster with Sold Out written across. I'm not surprised the gig is sold out it is not a big venue and Mr Peeps has a reputation for putting on class acts at good venues with a little added Manchester flare.
Ryan Jarvis took to the stage in front of a full house and for a young lad showed no signs of nerves. He set to work showing what one guitar, one voice and a set of well written songs can achieve. It was obvious that his own songs had real meaning to him and he performed with just the right amount of emotion. It was nice to hear plenty of references to his home town of which is rightly proud.
He also showed a great awareness of the other bands on the up at the moment with his version of Hourglass by Catfish and the bottlemen. The set included:
Shine for me
By the water
Outside this town
How did we get here, my dear
A great opening to the night well played sir.
It was fair to say that Dirty Sterling had brought a few fans with them from Scunthorpe and they made their presence felt.
This three piece really did do damage to the high wooden ceiling above the crowd at the castle. It was high energy, telling it as it is music from start to reluctant finish. The only break was to enjoy shots of the Mr Peeps branded Bourbon Whisky that was passed around the room.
The highlight for me was a traditional sounding blues track Whisky Chase with up to date lyrics that summed up the bands attitude. Find a recording and play it loud. While searching have a look for the track Jumping in Puddles a track that shows the softer side of the band and a great track.
The fans seemed to know every word and sang and danced to every track. I hope that they make a return to Manchester soon their set included:
Do I want to dance
Get into trouble
Go with the flow
Jumping in puddles
Rock and Roller
Velocets have played a lot of gigs around Manchester and I always seem to miss them. I was really pleased to be able to see them live at last.
The place was now bouncing and the crowd loved the performance. Unfortunately my notes and set list did not survive the shower of champagne from the Mr Peeps branded bottle that was opened in traditional style and passed around the band and crowd. The next best thing to hearing them live is to get on to the internet and give their songs a play, but really they need to be experienced live.
All three performances deserve a lot of credit. Mr Peeps never fails but to put on a quality night with his own special extras. The sound was top quality and the crowd were well and truly up for it.
I hear that Mr Peeps is going to need a few days to recover from the night but will soon be back planning his next night of quality live music. He may well be wearing more quality threads from YO clothing and I'm still a size large in tops!
A final mention must go to my photographer friends who were out in force last night. I hope the bands realise how lucky they are to have such talented and dedicated people working hard to document these gigs. Big love and hugs to you all and looking forward to seeing the results of your nights work.