Young Guns, The Xcerts, Every Avenue & Dangerous! – The Lemon Tree – 09/09/11
Another week, another gig, and another reviewer makes her debut on FnS. This week its the turn of young lady penguingonemad as she heads for The Lemon Tree to see Young Guns, The Xcerts, Every Avenue and Dangerous!.
When it comes to gigging in Aberdeen, I have quickly learnt two very important lessons to keep in mind:
1) The atmosphere during live performances is electric in this city and is often under-appreciated and overlooked by the vast majority of other music fans and artists
2) Aberdonian crowds should never, under any circumstances, be trusted with the safety of crowd surfers.
The night was highly enjoyable and the support bands each brought a different element to the show. Doors opened at 7.30pm and before you knew what was happening, the gig was already in full swing.
The crowd enjoyed (or, some may say, endured) three support bands of differing genres before the boys of Young Guns were seen anywhere near the stage. First up were Australian Heavy Metal band Dangerous!, who were highly energetic and clearly happy to be performing (arguably happier than the audience were to see them perform). Those who came to mosh rejoiced as the genre of music which contractually obliges for there to be a certain degree of anarchy within the crowd’s core came blasting through the speakers. The remaining members of the crowd shuffled somewhat awkwardly around the venue as front man Tommy Brady screamed “advice” at us all, including wise nuggets such as “Wear a condom” and “Don’t do drugs”. What Dangerous! lacked in originality, they made up for in sheer energy and enthusiasm.
Next up were Michigan born Pop Punk stars Every Avenue. Their songs were much less hardcore than Dangerous!, but this shouldn’t be seen as a bad thing.. They played several songs from their new release, “Bad Habits”, which got a highly positive reaction from the eager crowd, before finishing their short set with the popular hit “Tell Me I’m a Wreck”. They invited everyone to go over to their merch table to chat with them. a friendly offer which many accepted. Gooey-eyed girls melted as lead singer David Ryan Strauchman leaned out tentatively into the crowd and wished us all goodbye. The band’s set-list seemed to be balanced between their ‘heavier’ songs and their more melodic and upbeat hits. Either way, I was impressed with their live performance and would even go as far to say that they sounded better live than they do recorded.
The final support slot was filled up with Aberdonian trio The Xcerts. The crowd clearly supported their local stars as they got a fantastic reaction as soon as they hit the stage. Their indie-rock music seemed to captivate the crowds attention more so than the previous two supports did, mainly due to the band’s cult following here in their home-town. The gap between the mosh-pit crew and the less violent members of the crowd began to close as the venue started filling up. The people I went to the gig with (along with myself) were highly impressed by The Xcerts performance, with one friend telling me that, despite never hearing their music before, they were her favourite support of the night. Their distinctive sounds echoed in the ears of everyone there for the remaining half an hour wait before the headliners erupted onto the stage.
Young Guns experienced first hand that what Aberdonian crowds lack in size, we make up for in both noise and atmosphere. The English rockers immediately began to play “Elements”, a track in which groaning guitars and moody drums are a prominent feature. The venue instantaneously came to life, with the mosh-pit growing by a significant amount and seeming to get rowdier by the second. Everyone was jumping and screaming Gustav’s thought-provoking lyrics right back to him. Many more tracks from Young Guns’ 2010 release “All Our Kings Are Dead” were played, including a very memorable performance of classic “Stitches”, during which Gustav shouted “I don’t care if this is just a small Scottish venue, tonight, we’re going to treat it like a huge fucking arena! Get down on your knees!”. Obediently, and with great difficulty, we obeyed. The band remained silent until suddenly, the chorus blazed through the speakers and the crowd leapt up, causing more than a few injuries, but it was more than worth it for the memory it created.
In addition to their older material, Young Guns also played a couple of new tracks, one titled “Bones”, a promising look at what is to come when their new album is released. Bass player Simon and lead singer Gus seemed to give the most energetic performances, despite Drummer Ben and Guitarists John and Fraser clearly showing extreme musical talent. As the venue heated up, so did the setlist, finishing on the blazing hit “The Weight Of The World”, during which Gustav dove bravely headfirst into the crowd, trying to keep his voice steady as a hundred crazed fans man handled him whilst trying to keep him afloat. They almost failed at doing this, as the right hand side of the crowd nervously watched as Gustav tipped backwards into a forty-five degree angle.
As said before, Aberdonians aren’t the best when it comes to crowd surfing.
Words by penguingonemad, pics by Still Burning.
The Xcerts Website