With the end of the summer holidays coming upon us, we are all gearing up for whatever responsibilities are waiting for us in September.
In an attempt to soften the blow, Turn it to Eleven have organised a gig at the Top of the Town in Omagh. I arrive shortly before the first band takes the stage and by this point the crowd has packed out the seating area, with even more people occupying the area around the bar and stage. The venue may be small and dimly lit, but this only adds to the already electric atmosphere.
The first band to take the stage is Mosmo Strange, a quartet who started the night’s proceedings with their unique brand of hard rock. As soon as they get started, the crowd instantly gravitates towards the front of the stage, displaying immense anticipation and appreciation for the band and their material. Even though this is their first gig, it is evident that they are extremely well rehearsed as they perform a selection of original material such as ‘Hooked, Line and Stinker’, ‘Roastercoaster’ and ‘Curly Sue’. The instrumentation was constant and relentless, while the vocals were intense and powerful. Although their set primarily consisted of original material, there was two cover songs present in form of ‘A Girl like You’ by ‘Edwyn Collins’ and ‘Let Her Go’ by ‘Mac Demarco’. Overall, their set was excellent and it will be interesting to see what the future brings for this band.
Mosmo Strange have recently recorded their debut EP, which will be released on Thursday, the 17th of September at the Queens University Student Union in Belfast. It will feature support from Belfast based rock band, Petty Youth and electronic producer, H0wler.
The next band to take the stage is Paro who show a huge variety of influences as they perform a set consisting of mainly cover material from bands such as ‘Rage Against The Machine’, ‘Prodigy’ and ‘Arctic Monkeys’ amongst others. It is also important to mention that this was also the first live performance from Paro. They contain an extremely strong rhythm section that provided a solid platform of power and intensity throughout the set. Guitarist and singer ‘Eoin Monaghan’ confidently exhibited a raw swagger throughout the set which was most evident in their performances of ‘Black Betty’ and ‘Bulls on Parade’.
A standout moment of their set was a cover of ‘Helsinki Jam’ by ‘Muse’ which was an excellent presentation of the instrumentation skills of the rhythm section. The lights dimmed and the full effect of the bassist’s coloured strings was unveiled as they provided the only illumination during the performance. Although their set was primarily comprised of covers, there was an original piece of material in the form of ‘Get to the Floor. This was an excellent representation of the band and where they could potentially progress to in the future. With only having formed in July of 2015, Paro have shown immense potential and I look forward to what they have to offer in the future.
The third and final band of the night is Part Time Pilots who take the stage and instantly kick the night into overdrive with a set of energetic and catchy Punk Rock. The crowd congregates to the front of the stage; who were likely enticed from by the catchy songs and infectious stage performance of the band. In-between the occasional mosh pits that had formed, the crowd show their admiration for the band as they sing loudly and proudly along with their material.
Their setlist contained a cross section of material such as ‘Hunting Season’, which was the opening song on ‘Lovely Girls’ to ‘Bragging Rights’ and ‘Little Green Men’ from ‘Tally Ho Amigo’. The one exception to this was a stunning cover of ‘No One Knows’ by ‘Queens of the Stone Age’. Although their setlist was unfortunately cut short, they finished the night with the crowd in the palm of their hands, wanting more.
From what I witnessed, this is a band that exudes professionalism and a true enjoyment for the material that they are performing. Their set was extremely solid throughout, which is something that I would naturally expect from the band.
What I noticed about this gig was the juxtaposition between the already established and the up and coming. Part Time Pilots really delivered in terms of their performance and on stage presentation, but it will be interesting to see how Mosmo Strange and Paro develop in the foreseeable future. As important as the past and present is to a local music scene, it is always important to look at the next musical acts that will carry on the banner. Jason Gallagher, GiggingNI.com