Photo Credit: glamgigpics
My mate’s missus messaged me in bed – “it’s past midnight, trying 2 get 2 sleep and I still can’t stop grinning”. If you had ever met my mate you would perhaps guess it was not his nocturnal prowess that was likely to be creating the mirth (nor, if it was would I receive an update); no, it was because I had bought them tickets and dragged them out to see Liverpool jangly pop band Spinn at the Huddersfield Parish. It is true; Spinn gave one of my top favourite live gigs this year.
The night had started well, with promising local band Gauranga in particular setting the banging tone as support. Spinn arrived on schedule and immediately lead vocalist Johnny Quinn and his infectious grin and contorted dancing disarmed the bitterest of hearts. I swear Johnny could charm a Sepsis infection out from a blackened twisted limb. I bet that’s a compliment he has never imagined.
Having declared the recently released Spinn debut album as my record of the quarter (yes Im greedy; I have 4 albums of the year), I was familiar with much of the set list. I was impressed with the clarity of the sound Spinn achieved, and the room was soon bouncing to the jangly, gentle, sensitive strains of the band with the more nimble breaking into a huge mosh pit and lads dancing on their mates shoulders.
There was an amusing moment as just at the start of a much anticipated song some guitar tuning (and rettaching it to the amp was needed) and Johnny asked those outstretched arms to carry on holding up the bodies. It felt like a fashionably late mannequin challenge.
Musically I got a throw back to an earlier time; the class and quality of the pure pop of the likes of Roddy Frame and Aztec Camera perhaps, but brought up to date with a slightly faster and jaunty pace. These Spinn guys run a tight ship and there was hardly a note out of place as these likeable guys sweated their hearts out for our approval.
In my parallel universe Spinn would be the huge stadium band while the 1975 would be the promising challengers. On second thoughts I’m pleased to get closer to Spinn and enjoy the “at one” vibe of a small audience.
While many of the songs are about the complexity, pleasures and pain of love and relationship, towards the end of the set Spinn treated us to a chorus of the old terraces classic “Maggie’s In The Mud”. To use reviewer speak, the lyrics show a gritty realism and while repetitive, still offer a controversial but heartfelt comment upon a woman who divided opinion. With additional comment on Stephen Yaxley-Lennon, Spinn are not shy to use their platform to air their political views, nor in discovering where the best noodle bar in Huddersfield is. Music, food and current affairs; what a perfect combination.
To close Spinn played their big hit; apparently they’ve hit the charts in both Argentina and India and it has to only be a matter of time before the UK follow.