Live At The Rescue Rooms (2)

The Paddingtons

Date: 5/10/05   —   £9.00   —   Music


I didn’t know a great deal about The Paddingtons except having heard their debut single ’21’ which I liked and so when a couple of months ago I saw they were on tour and tickets were £9 all in, I thought ‘why not’

As I have already described the Rescue Rooms is a classic small club-type venue there are far less pretentions and bands mingle with the crowd throughout the evening. On queueing to get into the gig I was asked whether I was on the band’s mailing list, I said no and signed up and noticed that apart from one other 30 something on there the average age can have been no more than 20.

The first support act were a young band from Middlesbrough I didn’t catch the name of them but they were really pretty good, the lead singer had a gutsy voice and the lead guitarist played wailing guitar melodies whilst the rest rocked. It’s always difficult not to characterise bands by thinking of their influences, to my mind a combination of The Cure, The Clash and The Strokes would provide a decent approximation of what they sounded like. They were pretty slick to be honest and made the support act for Men They Couldn’t Hang look rank amateurs. They did about half an hour-ish having come on some time after 8. I was pleased to find that the drummer of The Paddingtons was in the crowd watching, this seems like a good tradition to support your support as it were and give some encouragement for new young talented live bands. I, and I think the rest of the crowd thought they were called the Voom Blooms because that was the name on the drum kit but the real Voom Blooms came on about half an hour later, there was a kind of ripple of surprise when they announced their name, and they proceeded to do their set for about another half hour.

The Voom Blooms are also a pretty well-organised group, a slick rock sound and musically very good. There’s something about the lead singer’s voice or maybe the seeming lack of passion in the lyrics that just doesn’t fit and that detracts from them a little, if they had that side sorted I’m sure they’d do very well. I think they’re a London band so I feel kind of inclined to give them that hometown support!

The Paddingtons came on stage at around 10pm which was quite a long wait after the doors had opened at 7.30. At this point all the youngsters barged forward to the front elbowing and jostling and being generally irritating but that’s teenagers for you. Propping up the bar with my jacket and long hair I felt like they’d be looking at me as some A & R man!

The Paddingtons set was loud, fast, rasping and short. Like a magnesium ribbon there was a brief bright flash and then gone. They played their singles ‘Loser’ ’21’ and the new one ‘Sorry’. The moshing and crowd surfing was violent the atmosphere was intense and it was all over in 45 minutes. I enjoyed the set, I admit I approved of the fact there was no encore, I feel that it only just works for even the most established of bands and it has to be a heartflet one from the crowd or it just seems contrived.

As a show I think my £9 was pretty well spent, I got to see 3 bands give their all on stage and play music of a style I like. Had I been a die-hard Paddingtons fan I might have been a little disappointed that there was more supports act time than main event time but The Paddingtons are only just making the transition themselves from support act to headliners.

What irritates me the most about the last 3 gigs I have been to is that either the viewing public are shrinking or suppliers are getting lazy because you are lucky now if you see an XL t-shirt these days and XXL seems to be long since a thing of the past which is a pain.