Onto the small Bodega stage in front of one of the most densely packed rooms in Britain came Shaded, a London-based outfit well-known as a UK pop punk staple. Playing through a lot of latest EP A Familiar Love proved popular, with ripples of interaction throughout. Somewhat surprisingly considering the single guitarist, their sound was thick and filled the room with ease, allowing frontman Matt East to just bring the party.
Second came arguably the least well-known of the three bands judging by the audience, but by no means were In Her Own Words going to take that lying down. Breaking out into their hard-hitting Silver Lights and Seratonin, they established a quick and total control of the room and livened things up a bit. The quintet looked rather cramped on the small Bodega stage, but climbing on monitors and PA systems gave them a bit more space as they put on a true performance to treat the East Midlands onlookers.
Coming out to a somewhat quiet crowd came the Aussie headliners Stand Atlantic, instantly breaking into Bullfrog with a huge vocal chorus backing track booming through the boxy room. Quickly, a quiet crowd became a ridiculously raucous one with crowdsurfers flying onto the barrierless stage and causing absolute chaos with cables and microphone stands.
Through the hectic dodging, vocalist Bonnie Fraser had to dodge the microphone while playing rhythm guitars, so a lot of the vocal work within the more upbeat songs was done in a chorus by the audience - not necessarily a bad thing, and the band seemed to be entirely blown away by the response they were getting. Closing up without leaving the stage before an encore, Coffee At Midnight and Lavender Bones seemed to step the chaos up another level. A hugely successful end to a great set; Stand Atlantic are one of the prime candidates for academy-level fame next - a bright future is set out ahead of them.
Photos by Thomas Berridge in Leeds