Live Review: We Are The Ocean – Fibbers, York, October 11th 2010

Nearing the end of the first half of their mammoth UK trek in support of the re-release of debut record Cutting Our Teeth, post-hardcore quintet We Are The Ocean stop off in York, and George makes his way down for fun times and more! Girls and boys adorn the streets long before doors – hopefully this’ll get exciting…

Fibbers is only a small venue, despite it’s recent refurbishment, and it’s fair to say the attendance is nothing short of dreadful. Only a couple of rows adorn the front barrier while many choose to stay well clear. For one of the smallest venues on the tour, this is beyond poor. Nonetheless, melodic merchants Proceed start off the nights pro-ceedings (see what I did there) with a fantastically big sounding noise. They sound machine-like in approach, with only frontman Dan Lancasters beautiful melodics setting the band apart from the chugs and churns – with a few added electronics in for good measure. Melancholy Monday sounds simply brilliant, and it’s a bit of a shame not many kids seem to “get” this band – only making any signs of being alive when the quintet announce that A Tricycle Journey is to be used as their next video. Movement does continue, in their defence, right into a brilliantly executed cover of Kelly Rowland’s Commander to bring an end to their set – short, sweet, and nothing short of extraordinary.

Chickenhawk simply baffle, and it’s as simple as that. If Proceed didn’t exactly click with tonights audience, then this band went straight over their heads. It’s riff after dirty riff, and it’s a few screws loose of a table, but it’s tight as fuck, and loud as fuck – in the end, isn’t that all people want? The four-pieces noise manages to pack a punch and starts to wake kids up, even if it’s clear nobody knows currently who the band are. What they lack in onstage banter, they make up for with their prescence – the only words uttered are “Have you had enough yet?” and “We’ve been Chickenhawk”, yet they speak a thousand screaming cries with this racket.

We Are The Ocean should really be playing to more awake and alert crowds than this – nonetheless, they choose to open with one of their brilliant quarter of new tunes from the re-released Cutting Our Teeth (released today, ironically) – they burst into Lucky Ones and it’s clear people have been taking note – each “Get up!” and “Wake up!” roared back in unison. It’s lovely to see the band sticking with songs that have gotten them in this position in the first place, giving Don’t Be Careless and later, God Damn Good respected outings. The originals still clearly get the best response.

It’s the underestimated album tracks that really make the set, however – the dangerous and powerful Our Days Are Numbered packs a massive wallop – more so when vocalist Dan Brown ushers the crowd to split down the middle, the results are deadly, while This Is Called My Home ushers on a massive crowd singalong and shows that the quintet do not need to exist on merely the tried and tested “sing/scream” technique.

A surprisingly long set for a band with only one record to their name, it’s hit an hour as guitarist Liam Cromby makes use of his exceptional vocal chords to lead the attendance in a rendition of the hauntingly beautiful Confessions before old favourite Nothing Good Has Happened Yet turns the pits sideways and to put it bluntly, makes sticky goo seep from young girls orifices in excitement. It’s a strong set, marred by a bit of a tame and nowhere near busy crowd, but it’s another day, another load of smiling faces for We Are The Ocean.

George Cannings.

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