LIVE REVIEW: Bernaccia, Mouses, Spitfire Hostels @ Think Tank, Newcastle (19.5.15) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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It was a night of mixed feelings, as Bernaccia prepared to take to the stage for their last headline performance before heading into the studio. Before that though, there was the small matter of a bunch of indie upstarts known as Spitfire Hostels. Their brand of math rock is sometimes lacking in a bit of heart and power in an already over-saturated market even though they make an effort to seem passionate. Immy Williams’ surprise appearance for a rendition of Psychosis was undoubtedly the highlight of the set; her vocals brought an added element of depth that showed the band could develop into something more promising.

Mouses, by contrast, know exactly what they want to be and aren’t ashamed to show it. Undoubtedly the musical equivalent of marmite, the Teesside duo put in a brash and thoroughly DIY set of loud, raucous pop rock tunes. The amount of energy the pair exude on stage is unparalleled, making them both exhausting and thrilling to watch in equal measure. Songs like Hollywood career along at a blistering pace, and while I’d normally be a little wary of the lack of light and shade in their set, the pair are so wonderfully lovable that it’s impossible not to be sucked in by them.

Bernaccia’s brand of gothic blues rock has always been something of a joy in a scene that’s dominated by jangly indie pop. Alongside old crowd favourites like No Home For The Buffalo, the band showcased new songs to be put on to their next release, including a storming rendition of Power To The Hills. An unexpected mini stage invasion from half of Coquin Migale – including an impromptu vocal performance from guitarist Matthew Wootton – rounded off a set that was already filled to the brim with passion and a sheer love of their craft. If, like me, you’re not lucky enough to catch them playing alongside Kobadelta and the legendary rabble of The Fall on Saturday, then it’s going to be a long wait before we see their majesty again.

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