LIVE: The Big Moon @ Think Tank

Music editor Jamie Shepherd caught The Big Moon at Think Tank on their return to Newcastle.

Jamie Shepherd
4th April 2016

I caught The Big Moon at the DIY tour last year with Vant and INHEAVEN and I was over the moon (excuse the shite pun) to discover that these girls were heading back to Newcastle. I can think of only three strong occasions when the support act really made their mark on me. The first chronologically was when I saw The Long Blondes (rest in peace) supporting Kaiser Chiefs back when I was a chubby indie youth. The second was when I caught Alvvays supporting Real Estate at Riverside in the semi-carefree days of second year. The third was The Big Moon at the aforementioned hipster-fest. The support tonight, however, was a mixed bag.

Openers Far Pacific are a local band that embody your archetypal “Post-Foals” young pupper indie band (Is that a thing? I’m coining it if not.). They’re the next generation of eager indie kids who are quite talented at making music but far from being mindblowing. They’re a step above your average Libertines wannabe and their music is slightly more cerebral (although the refrain on their song “Where Do We Go From Here” may suggest otherwise). What they lacked in scale they certainly made up for it in exuberance and it was clear from the age and reception of the other gig goers that this band were playing to a very loyal audience of friends.

Madonna and Britney at the 2003 VMAs it was not

Middle of the bill came Londoners Virgin Kids, who were touring with the headliners The Big Moon. Despite the fact that they managed to greet the crowd with an ill thought out “Hello, Nottingham” they managed to win the crowd over; I guess it wasn’t as much of a faux pas as when David Bowie came on stage at Roker Park on his Glass Spider Tour and opened it all up with “Hello, Newcastle”. What followed was an energetic set that at various points reminded me of David Byrne, Deerhunter, Spring King with a brief (thankfully) foray into the area of The Libertines. At one point the set took inspiration from the homoerotic onstage tension that Carl and Pete did so well when Asher and Paul went in for a wee kiss right there on the Think Tank stage. Madonna and Britney at the 2003 VMAs it was not.

we were all pretty heartbroken when Jules and Celia told us that the Walkers crisps they’d bought of us had been lost on the tour

The Big Moon were undeniably the stars of this show. Just as I remember, they were as plucky, ballsy and flippant as I remember them from the last time (three words that I think should be used in conversation more honest imho). Opening with a feedback drenched version of ‘Nothing Without You’, the girls commanded attention right from the start. Front-woman Jules’ Lauren Laverne-like posturing and wit was more than enough to distract us from the fact that the felt banner they’d set up at the back of the stage had fell off a quarter way through the set and nearly smothered drummer Fern. Okay, that was maybe a slight exaggeration, but we were all pretty heartbroken when Jules and Celia told us that the Walkers crisps they’d bought of us had been lost on the tour. The rest of the set featured some tracks that they were demoing for the album they’ve just signed up to record mixed with set stalwarts ‘Sucker’, ‘The Road’ and that absolutely phenomenal cover of Madonna’s ‘Beautiful Stranger’ that set my heart ablaze the last time I saw them. The final section of the gig was disrupted slightly by a crowd of loud Geordie blokes who kept nattering on during the gig. Jules and co persevered and gave it their all despite the gang of balding dicks who really just shouldn’t have been there and I’m happy to say that The Big Moon were just as exciting the second time around.

Jamie Shepherd

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