Gunnarson are taking over the top room of the oldest pub in Leeds tonight to launch their EP 'Borderlines', with a little help from their friends, old and new. The Wakefield band have put together a 4 track collection of impassioned songs, melodic hardcore with urgent vocals.
First up are fellow Wakey lads Radio Silence, back after a break and now also featuring All Down But 9's guitarist and vocalist John Atkinson. They play catchy punk rock with hard hitting lyrics like Wipe my name off that bullet, I have better plans" from 'Walking Wounded'. 'Monuments' is a great with a great melody too, reminiscent of some Nineties Gin Blossoms, yet a bit more upbeat.
Next up is a bit of solo work from Huddersfield's Johnny Gibson. He labels one song as country but Im feeling more blues from it, though the country influence is there. The lady he is with wrote one of the songs about an old (ex) friend. I miss a bit of his set but from the couple I hear he has a great voice.
Now it's time for everyone to stand back! Adore//Repel certainly live up to their name, like a true marmite band. The drummer reacts to the two guitarists, who do an excellent job of not smashing into each other or the crowd. Having set their mics up on the floor (though what for I don't know as they barely sing), and I mean, in the middle of the room nearly, the lads bounce about all over the place.
The music I must admit I do like... atmospheric build ups of atmospheric noise, a bit like some parts of Dinosaur Jr guitar solos but for around 3 minutes. 'Jim Hellwig' is a great tune, even though its repetitive. As mentioned there are hardly any vocals, just the odd time the two at the front shout into the mics. I can not tell what they are shouting, as the whole sound has been rammed up for these guys, so much so that I have to have a rest from it for ten minutes. That's it, I wanted to stay but I could hear them out of the tiny room anyway. I really like their sounds but don't know what to actually make of them! Being a bassist I would say they need a bassist, but they sound fine without one too! More vocals would help too, but it's a good idea for a band who haven't got a singer.
Now for Gunnarson. The lads have been gigging hard, having just played at Leeds' Carpe Diem and with more shows coming up, like one in May with Freeze The Atlantic (ex Reuben and Hundred Reasons members). The new EP features some great passionate tracks, and the sound that three guitarists make is needed to back up the intense raw vocals. There's influences from Hot Water Music, The Bronx, Propagandhi and Leatherface, to name a few. Hardcore melodic tight-as-fuck punk.
It's a short set that features tracks from the EP like 'No Place To Be' and 'No Hope'. So much energy and feelings from the guts can be heard in these songs. At one point singer Andy Dunn unfortunately breaks a new guitar string and still manages to sing whilst tuning his guitar as the rest of the band plough on. A nice addition to the set is a cover to end the show, by Wakey melodic hardcore punk legends Milloy. And it's an oldie at that ('Spiders'). Shame it's a short set, but it's nice to fit four bands into less than three hours I guess. There's a bit of friendly banter as bassist Paddy Nielsen used to be Radio Silence's guitarist! Gunnarson rose from the ashes of Open Disregard, another good Wakefield melodic band.
Out Of Step Records and Jumbo Records are both spreading the word about this fairly new band, and rightly so. I expect the lads to go far, so watch out for the freight train that is Gunnarson coming your way.