For Cabbage, the current political sphere has given huge amounts of inspiration for their material, it was no surprise that the Liverpool leg of their current U.K. tour was popular with those who’ve joined their musical protests. Equally popular are support bands April and The Shimmer Band, the latter last appearing in Liverpool in October. Plenty of the crowd were down early to see April and they’ll again feel like the clientele for these bands has had only a positive impact on their standing.
The Shimmer Band came onto electronic tones and strobe lighting with their new single Jacknife and The Death Call and Sunkick both going down well. In alien-like glasses they reflect energy onto the crowd literally with their clothing and also with their reverberating sound. Frontman Tom Newman hailed the crowd after the gig as “one of the best, Manchester will be good cos it’s their hometown, but that was brilliant”, he told me afterwards. Advantage Liverpool then.
The main event, Cabbage arrived on stage to a fanatic reception, some already shirtless they ripped into their discography with aggression and wit. If Labour values are for ‘straight talking honest politics’ then this is surely the musical equivalent. Indespensible Pencil and Terrorist Synthasiser set the tone for the utterly mental performance of Uber Capitalist Death Trade.
Lee Broadbent on lead vocals is in the crowd, there’s sweat dripping from the ceiling, so much so if there was a plumber in the crowd he might have fancied himself for some overtime. In good spirit the crowd poured over the barrier, a polite warning not to damage the equipment, “we love the support though”, two of the band crew are forced to lean backwards against the barrier to stop the bodies, grinning they continue into Dinner Lady. That’s what it’s all about, this is rebellion through music but it’s all in favour of a good time.
It’s Grim Up North Korea, and a new tune Gibraltar Ape go down well with a crowd now physically drained but emotionally charged with a passion for the band from Mosley. Kevin is the final song and following that the crowd pour back out onto Seel Street, soaked, smiling.
Go to see Cabbage for a unique experience, this is youthful energy and working class aggression at its absolute peak, they are flying.
Photo: Fi, @dirtyroknroller