Time hop back to two years ago and you’d find Moose Blood playing a very busy show at London’s Old Blue Last to celebrate the release of their debut album. Tonight though, the band are playing a very busy show at London’s Koko as they celebrate properly the release of album number two. But this isn’t a history lesson or a walk down memory lane. The band have their sights set firmly on the future and from the opening twirl of ‘Pastel’, Moose Blood are on the rise.
A few rungs down, Boston Manor are on a similar climb. It’s just shy of seven o’clock in the evening and not only is Koko already heaving, but everyone is switched onto the band’s sharp cuts and gentle blows. The five-piece from Blackpool have spent the past couple of years being decent but tonight, also celebrating the recent release of their new album, they’re never anything but spectacular. There are sing-alongs, crowdsurfers and an overwhelming sense of victory as the band make the venue theirs for twenty-five incredible minutes.
Turnover are less commanding, but that’s sorta the point. The band made the skip from abrasion to melodic wonderland with the release of ‘Peripheral Vision’ and it’s now a world they own. Amongst the foggy escape and ever-building atmosphere are brief flickers of glitter but Turnover, collected and sure of what they now are, never chase it.
Moose Blood also have very little to do in terms of pursuit. From the moment they walk out, there’s magic in the air and onstage. Colour-cordinated and in perfect sync, their rise may have been swift but it’s never felt out of reach. Tonight is further proof that that special something they have was never a fluke. “You know you have me,” sings ‘Pastel’ and for the duration, band and audience hold each other in a tight embrace. Arms aloft, voices strained and hearts on fire, Moose Blood inspire solidarity. The likes of ‘Honey’, ‘Glow’ and ‘Shimmer’ show off a group unafraid of their own voice while the reflect of ‘Bukowski’, ‘Chin Up’ and ‘Pups’ sees them constantly pushing forward.
A majority of gigs have that special moment where the goosebumps dance about your skin but from start to end, every second of Moose Blood’s show at Koko felt vital and enchanting. The time hop forward is impossible to predict but the future’s bright. The future’s ‘Blush’.