Baby Strange + Dolomite Minor LIVE @ The Rainbow, Birmingham 06.02.15

Co-headline tours are almost unheard of these days, but Glasgow’s Baby Strange and Southampton’s Dolomite Minor have brought together the north and south for a late-punk-fuelled evening that can only go down well.

Bringing the pride of Brum, Lime take the support slot providing the fuzzy ’90s intro everyone was in need of. Much like their successors, they bring along attitude-filled, punk-laden melodies that combine catchy lyrics with alluring hooks which don’t hesitate in bringing the crowd a little closer and moving along.

Next up are Dolomite Minor, a duo consisting of Joe Grimshaw – delivering the vocals and guitar – and Max Palmier, supplying the drums. Seeming effortless in creating brash rhythms, it’s hard to believe it’s just two of them up on the stage rather than a 4-piece. With the crowd pumped for Baby Strange, most are just getting acquainted with the pair but still get involved with the growing build ups and drops that keep on surprising. ‘Let Me Go’ and ‘Talk Like An Aztec’ stand out, letting their sleazy yet bluesy rock conquer, owing to the solid drums and perfectly overdriven guitar.

Initiating with ‘Most Days’, it doesn’t take long for Baby Strange’s notorious punk-inspired rock to get going. Moving straight into ‘VVV’, frontman Johnny Madden’s unnerving, repetitive pleas of “violate me” stir up even more angst in the crowd, whilst brothers Connaire and Aidan McCann keep their cool, laying down the strong, infectious beats.

Bringing out their rugged and more seemingly punk side, it’s not long till the roars of “ew I’m tired of my generation” belonging to ‘Pure Evil’ step the energy levels of The Rainbow up a notch. Bringing lashes of carefree melodies joined by thundering drums, there’s no sign of holding back, even with the tracks the crowd haven’t had a chance to check out yet like ‘Money’ and ‘Want It/Need It’.

Dreams of a ‘Luver’ follow on, which even with the lovesick lyrics keeps up with their straight-faced façade. Expectations of blustering basslines, confident riffs and commanding drum beats are fulfilled and reacted to with pure raucousness.

With a finale of ‘Distance Yourself’ and ‘Friend’, there’s not much that can go wrong. Chilling yet snide vocals begin ‘Distance Yourself’ but are soon replaced by creeping guitars and beating basslines that may not pack the same punch as their other material, but still energises the room. Saying farewell with a raw and edgy ‘Friend’, the frenzied departure gives the go ahead for amps to go high and for everyone else to join in with the rage one last time.

Rebecca Rogers