Clor, The Young Knives, Delayed Promise

Steven Daniels 14/07/2005

It's a sweltering night in the Roadhouse tonight, for the arrival of Clor the magicians of cyber punk from the past or something else Alan Partridge-esque.

Delayed Promise are anything but Alan-esque, although some of the surf attire on display could be considered to be slightly odd. However their pop reminiscent of Jimmy Eat World proves a warming (as if that was needed) and jovial start to proceedings. A well-known outfit on the local live scene they sound fantastic through the Roadhouses PA and win themselves a few new fans in the process.

The Young Knives crank the heat up another notch, looking like they'd hot footed it here from an IT convention their angular pop stays the right side of Franz Ferdinand et al with some strange time signatures (more of this later) and a generally crazy show including break dancing by Technician 1. One track mid set contains a set of chord/time changes that would frighten even the most ardent math-rocker, and not only that it's done with a sense of humour and has the band and half the crowd howling as they pull it off in all its glorious ridiculousness. They leave with a story about “putting a phone up your arse” and disappear into the night leaving a few stunned faces.

By now Clor even have to remove their customary leather jackets given that they'd be half melted on the stage by the time they start. Less angular, more poppy and one step ahead of the game they just shade The Young Knives tonight, but only just. There's something that "Love and Pain" has got: that magic pop moment when they fuse their fancy timings and trickery with perfect power pop. And it serves Clor well as the crowd bop along in appreciation. Further into the set the band stretch their repertoire right around their debut album, including all their singles and a couple of well received b-sides. One thing is clear about Clor you get the impression this is only the beginning. Yet right now they sound like little else, though at times the synths do lend themselves to the 80's revivalist scene, that would however be a tad harsh on the band who have been making this mental racket for a good few years now. It is well created, and more complex than initial listens reveal. Not only that as a live band they are much more powerful than a year or so ago when they supported Soulwax on their jaunt around the UK. With their album imminent they pull out all the stops to make sure every one in the room heads out to buy the new album, and it's hard to see their rise stopping. With shows at Leeds/Reading coming up they are on a high, and as they leave Manchester with people standing on tables and the bar to get a glimpse, everyone leaves with the sense that we may well have seen the start of something special.All that for a fiver, more please!