LIVE: Ratboy, w/ Bad Sounds and Ten Tonnes, Manchester Academy, 09.02.18

After returning from this gig, I had to have a moment to assess what I had just been too. The music was great and all the acts who performed on the night played to a really high and admirable level, but the atmosphere that was present in the crowd seriously affected the nights overall enjoyment levels. Now, I would not say I am in the same age bracket as the majority of those attending, but I am well aware of how gig culture has changed since I first started attending gigs aged 14 or 15. So, to make this review fair, I will separate the crowds behaviour from the performers on stage, as the two were worlds apart.

Bad Sounds provided the support for the evening alongside Ten Tonnes. Both acted as a great device for getting the crowd fired up in preparation for the main event. Bad Sounds have supported Ratboy on some of their previous tours so seasoned fans of the band were used to them and were buzzed to see them again. The band enthralled the fans with their enthusiasm and big hitting songs. The energy they brought to the stage for their 30 minute set really showcased the tone of the evening and allowed fans to let their energy out whilst still building up the excitement for Ratboy.

Once Ratboy made their way onto the stage, the young crowd were at a fever pitch waiting for those first few guitar chords to hit and they certainly didn’t disappoint. The dancing and most pits were plentiful whilst the band played through their hits such as: ‘Move’, ‘Laidback’ and ‘Fake ID’. The band mixed old and new in a respectable way which showcased just how much the fans love the bands work. New songs from the recently released album Civil Disorder went over really positively and the crowd sang along with the band, showing just how much they have been listening to the new album considering it has only been out for a couple of weeks.

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Ratboy have shown their worldwide credentials previously when they supported Liam Gallagher on his recent tour. Considering the crowd for that tour had only really turned up to see Liam Gallagher and Liam Gallagher alone, Ratboy received a very positive reaction considering they could have been universally despised due to the crowd becoming inpatient. The latter happened recently when Slaves supported Kasabian, which was a real shame to see as they actually put on a really good set. But all credit must go to Ratboy for understanding the crowd for that tour and the crowd for his own tour, who clearly loved what they were seeing on the night. Ratboy were made to headline, not support, and they showcased their headlining potentials with this tour.

Ratboy can be compared to the early work of the Arctic Monkeys, and I can see the comparison. They have had two successful album releases now and their fanbase has expanded vastly over the short amount of time they have been in the public eye. Their rise to the top is coming very quickly but they are able to handle the pressures that brings. You can tell they are a band that just love to play and see how the crowd react. The crowds love the band and the band will continue to perform to please them. The night proved just how much this group of musicians love the tour life and the indie-rock vibe is alive and well. Take the behaviour from some sections of the crowd out of the picture and you have a night that is really enjoyable. The band showcased some really great music which was a breath of fresh air to a genre which can be argued was becoming a bit stagnant. I would really recommend seeking out Ratboy the next time the band tours or at a number of music festivals this summer, it’s really worth your time. Big things are in store for this band and I cannot wait to see them obtain the success they deserve.

Words – Oli Hope / Twitter: @oli7242
Photos – Georgia Flynn / Twitter: @georgeporge13 / Instagram: @georgiaflynncreative

Melissa Svensen

Melissa Svensen

Melissa, 22. Editor. Student, music journalist, probably talking about Blur or Bowie