During Employed To Serve’s set, the guitarist sharply orders “you better get moving or you can fucking do one”. From that point on each corner of the club is stacked with waving arms and bouncing attendees, all hands wrapped protectively around their cans of Red Stripe lager. With The Joiners already bathed in the sweat of angsty teens after the chaotic effect of the support, the venue is more than ready to watch grunge-pop quartet Milk Teeth – and ready they are too.
Commencing with flickers of many well-known sing-a-long tunes for their entrance, including The Imperial March, Milk Teeth flips the atmosphere; from relentless, brilliant brutality to something a little lighter. Think the Marmozets meets Nirvana.
As front-woman Becky Blomrough’s rough-around-the-edges voice declares “I like sleeping with you / When we’re hiding under-covers making the most of our youth” on ‘Owning Your Okayness’, the night’s aroma of youthful fun is duly set. The brisk-paced ‘Brickwork’ soon followed, alongside the attitude-laden ‘Brain Food’ and ‘Prism’.
Tonight’s show was always promised to be a good one. With Milk Teeth having previously supported Creeper on their tour at the beginning of the year, the band seem to have stolen a few of Creeper’s fans for their own, leading, of course, to a sold out gig. With hoards of stage divers, surfing through the crowd in a sea of sweat, and teams of disarrayed moshers prowling the room, the night is an inevitable success.
Milk Teeth are fun, fierce and will in no doubt, similar to many of their stage diving fans, be surfing just as ferociously across the festival bills and gig line ups of the season. However, it is worth noting that Milk Teeth were perhaps tendering slightly to their name; not in the way of being temporary, but perhaps not as quite as developed as they should be – when compared to their support that is. After all, Employed To Serve were a band with a hell of a bite.
Words by Lizzie Capewell – @s4diowitch
Milk Teeth’s gig not only marked the band’s penultimate headline show of the tour, but spelled out a happy resolution to worries concerning The Joiners’ future. After taking a battering throughout July’s untimely poor weather, Ricky Bates et al sent out a plea for help to raise funds to keep the proud ship afloat, and were met with overwhelming results. Within a week The Joiners’ GoFundMe page raised nearly £10,000, overshadowing their seemingly optimistic £7,000 target – “seemingly” to those who believe grassroots music is on its way out. The story of The Joiners is a glimmer of hope in the otherwise looming darkness of small-venue closures, proving the power en masse of music lovers at every level of the industry.