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Live Reviews

Beans On Toast

Three Wise Monkeys, Colchester

Friday 3rd December 2021

Beans On Toast

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BEANS ON TOAST – COLCHESTER – LIVE REVIEW

This is our first visit to Three Wise Monkeys in Colchester and we discover a fantastic little venue above the pub on a vibrant and Christmassy Friday night in the town centre. Our reason for visiting is cult folk singer Beans On Toast, as he hits the road to support new album, ‘Survival of the Friendliest’.

The support slots tonight from local singer Benjamin Brown and main tour support Kitty Liv sail by, which is a complement to both for their delightful performances.

Soon enough it’s time for the man himself to grace the intimate stage and for this tour he is joined by Liv, and Mystery Jets bassist Jack Flanagan to fill out his sound during portions of the set.

The first portion of the show sees the three-piece serenade the audience with a mixture of old and new tracks. New songs ‘A Beautiful Place’, ‘Blow Volcano Blow’ and ‘Not Everyone Thinks We’re Doomed’ take centre stage and showcase his wonderful new album ‘Survival of the Friendliest’.

Read our review of ‘Survival of the Friendliest’

As with all Beans On Toast shows, there are sing-a-longs galore with ‘Watching the World Go By’, ‘I’m Home When You Hold Me’ and ‘The War On War’ all coming early on. Soon its left for Beans alone to break out a number of favourites and rarities such as ‘A Whole Lot of Loving’ and ‘Peter Pan’s Playground’.

Towards the end of the night Liv and Flanagan return for another superb collaboration on songs such as ‘Humans’ and ‘Let’s Get Married Again’ from that new album.

At the end of his encore, Beans On Toast is joined on stage by long time friend and collaborator Frank Turner for ‘The Album of the Day’. A great treat for fans, and evidence that you should expect the unexpected at a Beans show.

A fantastic evening of songs, stories and laughs is closed out with ‘On & On’ which sees the main man backed by Flanagan, Liv and Turner for a truly spectacular finale. Tonight was just further evidence that Bean On Toast is an underground national treasure!

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Check out Episode 3 of The Full Pelt Music Podcast with our guest Beans On Toast!

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Live Reviews

The Snuts

Colchester Arts Centre

Tuesday 23rd November 2021

The Snuts

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THE SNUTS – COLCHESTER ARTS CENTRE – LIVE REVIEW

Winter is most definitely coming! It’s rather cold as we join the queue to enter the beautiful Colchester Arts Centre. Surprisingly for a sold out gig, despite arriving just five minutes before doors opening, the queue is somewhat sparse.

Once inside, the venue does slowly begin to fill during the opening set from local music scene regular Benjamin Brown (Dingus Khan/SuperGlu). Whilst those familiar with his work enjoy his set, there is a general ambivalence amongst the rest of the crowd.

By the time our next support act, Grace Barr, takes to the stage the venue is packed. Sadly most of those in the venue are more interested in talking to each other than listening to Barr, which makes it quite hard to hear her performance. What is audible does sound very good, so it’s a shame the crowd don’t seem to care.

The mood changes the instant our headliners The Snuts grace the stage. The compact venue is then transformed from noisy Wetherspoons to Reading Festival main stage. Instantly there are people up on shoulders and pints, bottles and cups flying across the crowd. It would appear that The Snuts have certainly captured the hearts of what is often coined the lad rock crowd.

WATCH ‘GLASGOW’ ON YOUTUBE
The Snuts – ‘Glasgow’

There is no doubt that this band are going to be huge, and they are already creeping up next years’ festival posters. A number one album, sold out shows and the audience reaction tonight all hint to that destiny. But, if they are to achieve it they will need great music to back them up.

Thankfully for them on the evidence of tonight, they have that in abundance. That number one album, ‘W.L.’ is naturally the focus of the evening and ‘Glasgow’, ‘All Your Friends’, ‘Always’ and ‘Juan Belmonte’ provide a stunning opening to their performance.

Read our review of ‘W.L.’

‘Maybe California’, ‘Burn the Empire’, ‘Elephants’ and ‘Top Deck’ are all highlights too as the band blast through their set to the delight of the crazed audience. The crowd are sent off into the night with an encore of ‘Sing for Your Supper’.

Another successful gig in the bank for The Snuts, who are unlikely to be back in venues this small anytime soon! Expect to see their name everywhere over the next few years.

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Live Reviews

Frank Turner

Coda, Colchester

Tuesday 10th & Wednesday 11th August 2021

Frank Turner Coda Colchester

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FRANK TURNER – CODA, COLCHESTER – LIVE REVIEW

Having already attended and reviewed the Download Pilot Festival and Seasick Steve since the reopening of the live music sector, we want to stop referencing the pandemic. The problem is that nights like the two that Frank Turner serves up at Coda in Colchester simply act a reminder of what has been missing for the past almost 18 months.

Thankfully, mercifully, cautiously, live music is back. For two consecutive evenings, fans cram into the awesome independent venue in Colchester known as Coda. The reason? If any opportunity for a gig isn’t excuse enough, the one and only Mr. Turner is introducing himself to an area of the country he now calls home.

Whilst more likely to be found in much larger venues these days, Turner still has the grassroots familiarity to instigate a hot, sweaty drunken sing-a-long session. Everybody packed into this bar knows every word to every song and passionately sings them back in unison. It’s like live music never went away.

Playing the two shows in the same venue, Turner mixes his set list each night. Realistically the man has enough in his arsenal to cover many more nights here, as he demonstrated with his Independent Venue Love series during Lockdown.

Read our feature on the ‘Independent Venue Love’ series

All the fan favourites are on tap for those in the bar with ‘Long Live The Queen’, ‘1933’, ‘The Road’, ‘The Way I Tend To Be’, ‘The Ballad of Me and My Friends’, ‘Be More Kind’, ‘The Next Storm’, ‘Photosynthesis’, ‘Recovery’, ‘Get Better’ and set closer ‘I Still Believe’ amongst the songs available both nights.

The guest ales such as ‘Polaroid Picture’ and ‘If Ever I Stray’ on Tuesday and ‘I Knew Prufrock Before He Got Famous’, ‘I Am Disappeared’ and ‘Four Simple Words’ on Wednesday help to differentiate the shows for those in attendance both nights.

Having started out his solo career on his own (and still performing solo regularly), Turner is now often accompanied by The Sleeping Souls. In recent times solo shows have been billed as duo shows and see Turner joined by Sleeping Soul member Matt Nasir. This dynamic works extremely well both for musical accompaniment and also for onstage banter.

As mentioned, Turner now resides in Essex. He has a song called ‘Wessex Boy’. Yes, he did the obvious switch, which for every other artist would have been incredibly tacky, but somehow for Turner here it works and elicits a proudly fierce reaction from the crowd.

THE FULL PELT MUSIC PODCAST

Check out Episode 1 of our Podcast with guest Frank Turner

A new album is on the horizon for Turner and over the two nights fans are treated to glimpses of the record in the shape of ‘The Work’, ‘Muhammad Ali’, ‘Little Life’, ‘Fatherless’ and new single ‘The Gathering’.  There certainly appears to be plenty more to come from an artist for whom their next album will be their ninth solo effort.

The future appears bright. Over two nights the stage was graced by four support acts with bright futures with Wilswood Buoys and Jess Guise on Tuesday and Gin Twins and Josiah Mortimer on Wednesday all impressing the packed audience.

So, yes, the future does indeed appear bright. Bright for Turner, bright for a great new venue, bright for young musicians, and bright for live music! There really isn’t anything better.

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