Words and Photos by Ged Camera
Both the upstairs and downstairs venues at Gullivers are packed with listeners, the larger upstairs space offering the indie-electronics-psych musical flavours that are currently flourishing, whilst downstairs, country and Western-orientated offerings are keeping an appreciative audience engaged.
Leading the troupe creating the swirling rhythms at the top of the stairs is the charismatic Pines frontman, Chris Cooper. He forsakes a swig of beer for one of water. There is plenty of time for alcohol later. At the moment, there is a crowd that wants entertainment and they want it now.
So the five-part ensemble is playing a home gig, if the football comparison can be made without a red card being shown. The audience haven’t needed to travel far to demonstrate their support for their fellow Mancunians and they don’t so much shout the lyrics back to the band as sing along with them, acting as a backing choir.
Cooper prowls the edge of the stage, demanding attention when singing, then walking across to acknowledge the efforts of other band members as they deliver their attractive blend of guitars and distortion which are all supplemented by Sam Jones’s synthesisers. Sounds swell and build to their impressive climax, allowing their ever-increasing band of followers the chance to display their appreciation, as they ready themselves for the short trip home.