Last Thursday I ventured out into the storms and made a longer than usual journey to Bristol (by coach rather than train thanks to the weather) to see The Boxer Rebellion play live at Thekla. Which when I arrived discovered is more of an unusual venue than the previous pubs I had seen them play in – Thekla is a boat. I liked it as a venue though and had no complaints about the acoustics as I have had in some places in Bristol before. They also had a bar stocked with drinks of my liking so that won me over too (Somersby cider, yum).
The Boxer Rebellion have to be one of my favourite live bands. I love their albums but they are something extra special when playing live. The songs absolutely come to life and take on a whole new, incredible, sound. They are also some of the coolest dudes I’ve seen on stage. That may sound cheesy but they are the epitome of the word. I could not take my eyes off them; which was helped by the fact that I was stood right front centre. Unfortunately my iPhone camera did not properly capture the moment so I apologise for the sub-par photos.
The band were on fine form and we were treated to a great set, with a wonderful mixture of old and new songs. Nathan (the lead singer) did his usual trick of jumping down into the audience and having a bit of a dance and jump around with everyone, which is always a highlight as crowd atmosphere and rowdiness is the one thing that is slightly lacking at TBR gigs. Don’t get me wrong, people still get into it but there isn’t enough bounce and energy in my opinion, which seems a shame. But that doesn’t take any of the enjoyment away from the night, in fact it probably just saves me from a few bruises!
And yes, I did my usual trick of claiming a setlist at the end. Luckily for me on this occasion I met the band after the show and they were kind enough to all sign it for me.
Whilst the following video was not recorded at the Bristol gig, it was one of my favourite songs during the set and an example of how well their songs translate from recorded album to live playing.