Live Reviews

Cute Lepers – Live

The Albert, Brighton

There’s an in-joke in Brighton that The Shitty Limits (assembled from assorted spots in the South-East) come here to play once a week, and tonight is in fact their second gig in our seaside city in the past 6 days.

Hey, no-one’s complaining, these four lads are a total blast, knocking out a powerful and economic set, ripping it up with their untamed fast snotty hardcore and stomping primal garage punk hybrid.

The crowd are relatively static to begin, so frontman Louis hurls himself about front of stage, gets in peoples faces, and soon enough their adrenalized beat gets people moving and shaking. Excellent band, seen them lots of times and they never disappoint.

The Cute Lepers, from Seattle, are fronted by Steve E Nix from The Briefs, who has brought band mate (and bassist) Kicks in to the fold, and they are joined by two other dudes, on rhythm guitar and drums respectively. They did have some backing singers too apparently, along for the ride, but they have already been sent packing… not sure what the story there is. I can confirm though that it woulda been a squeeze on the compact Albert stage with the full ensemble.

Wearing their influences proudly on their Promoting their debut album “Can’t Stand Modern Music” (on Damaged Goods Records) The Cute Lepers (if you hadn’t guessed from the LP title) are musically heavily in debt to the retro-power-punk, and new wave musicola of yesteryear… with particular reference to late-Seventies/early-Eighties UK… and yes, throw the resurgent mod-pop of the day in there too!

I’d not heard any Cute Lepers records before this gig, but, being a product of the era they set to emulate, am familiar with their sound and style, and it definitely ‘works’ with one tight buzzing melodic number after another, taught jerky bursts which got my foot tapping with regularity, and the good humour and enthusiasm from the stage soon spread thru the packed sweating Friday night crowd.

Wearing their influences proudly on their sleeves, they came back for an encore with covers of Northern Irelands long forgotten Starjets and to close the Jones ‘n Cook penned “I’m a Lonely Boy” that would act as a precursor to the ex-Pistols collaboration in The Professionals. Fun evening.

Pete Craven