Three Wise Monkeys seem to be continuing their run of bringing interesting new music from out of town into Colchester. Mixing two bands from further afield with two more local acts, this gig, on paper at least, looks incredibly promising. Opening the night are Colchester’s Pure Trash, a punk (occasionally bordering on pop-punk, occasionally bordering on emo) group who seemed to appear from nowhere during the pandemic. Their music is incredibly catchy and energetic, with excellent gravelly vocals reminding me of the new wave of American emo bands. They’ve achieved a lot in very little time and I can’t wait to see what they do next. Palps are a band I last saw a few years ago in Chelmsford, who I thought were pretty good at the time, who’ve perfected their sound in the meantime. More refined, more depth to the tracks. New track Ava sounds particularly good. If you haven’t seen Palps yet I can definitely recommend you catch them next time!
The Hideaways are an interesting band. There are moments where it all comes together and everything sounds great but then it sort of falls apart and the vocals aren’t really in tune and the song falls apart. It happens occasionally within a single song; there’ll be a a great section of music (largely held together by some great synth lines) but then it’ll just change to a chorus that doesn’t really work. Great potential, and maybe they’re a bit better on record or were just having an off night but they just seemed a bit sloppy next to the rest of the lineup.
The Alchemy give off the impression of a band that’s gigged their whole lives and toured the country many times over. Even upon discovering that the local crowd didn’t know their songs as well as they might have hoped they still gave it their all and played for the crowd, making sure those that didn’t know them at the beginning if the night certainly would by the end. Their music has an anthemic, well produced, edge to it; polished but not to the point of removing the excitement from the live performance. New singles sounded great and I left thinking that they’ll be a big band in no time.