LIVE REVIEW: Muncie Girls, Woahnows, Happy Accidents, Tough Tits @ Think Tank?, Newcastle (27.11.16) | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image: Muncie Girls by Carl Chambers

Local trio Tough Tits channel the energy and attitude of Bikini Kill, backed by the powerful no-nonsense drumming and vitriol of Babes In Toyland. Addressing feminist issues on tracks like the riot grrrl vibes of Hairless and the synth augmented rant of Nip Slip, they are playful and confident on stage. Utterly brilliant and absolutely essential for the tough times we’re living in.

London’s Happy Accidents keep up the positive vibes with their relentlessly upbeat pop punk. Tunes like Chameleon and You’re Probably Wrong are full of energy with the perfect mix of camp, kitsch and twee thrown into the melting pot. An unlikely cover of Grimes’ California is touchingly sincere and fits perfectly.

Hailing from Plymouth, the Woahnows make good-time indie punk and refuse to take themselves too seriously. The hook-heavy Watching Accidents from their debut record Understanding And Everything Else sets the pace which rarely deviates, plenty of riffs and leads bundled up into three-minute pop songs. Playing mostly new tracks – because, as the band say, nobody knows the old songs anyway – 21 is a highlight, a song about putting problems into perspective set to a Smells Like Teen Spirit like chord progression with a deft little guitar hook thrown in for good measure. Nice.

Fresh from releasing one of the best albums of 2016, Muncie Girls have tunes in abundance and are the most accessible and melodic band on the bill tonight. Lead singer and bassist Dean may appear shy on stage but she’s a great talent with lyrics that owe as much to literature as the music does to the likes of Sleater-Kinney. Whether it be the laid-back indie of Social Side (“my loneliness is in remission”) or the Juliana Hatfield-esque power pop of Gone With The Wind, Muncie Girls just have that special something; it may be understated, but it’s there in abundance. Addressing sexual abuse, anthem Respect is a timely candidate for the best song of the year and this fantastic bill has been one of the unexpected local gig highlights of 2016.

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