LIVE: Reuben @ Academy 3, Manchester (24/09/2007)

Date: September 24th, 2007
Venue: Academy 3, Manchester
Support: Enjoy Destroy, Kill Kenada

Rating: 8/10


Reuben profile

‘In Nothing We Trust’ is Reuben‘s most recent release and their third full-length studio album, and they’ve recently embarked on a UK tour to accompany and promote this album. On these dates, they’re accompanied by small UK support acts Enjoy Destroy and Kill Kenada. Everyone at the venue has got to have at least heard of Reuben to be here, and most are probably here just for them, and with the band having one of the most dedicated fan bases around you can assume instantly that the atmosphere and reaction from the crowd is going to be immense.

Opening support act Enjoy Destroy hit the stage to start the night’s antics. Consisting of members that look like they could all be related to one another and a frontman who sings, plays guitar AND plays the keyboard on top of that, they deliver melodic alternative rock and soften the audience for the next two upcoming acts. They’re merely just preparing slowly but surely for the experience they’ll get from second support band, Kill Kenada.

One of the more atmospheric and experimental bands we’ve seen recently, Kill Kenada open their set with a short instrumental. This band look like a group of three misfits; there’s guitarist Danny Williams, who dresses fashionably according to today’s standards, drummer Eldge who looks like he could play in a metal/hardcore band, and a make-up wearing bassist and frontman Tim Smithen – who has tattoos dotted in various areas across both arms including the likes of Gloomy Bear and characters from the video game Pac-Man. However, when a band sounds as intense as Kill Kenada do tonight it wouldn’t matter if one dressed like Darth Vader, another like an Umpa Lumpa, and another like a Womble. Their songs mainly tell of anger, rage, and self-hatred with chorus lines such as “I fucking hate myself!”, and they get the audience pumped up and ready for tonight’s headliners.

After a 30 minute interval the room fades to black, and headliners Reuben soon jump to the stage. Wearing black shirts with the letters ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ on front of them, (from the video of their recent single – ‘Deadly Lethal Ninja Assassin’), the band begin their set with ‘Suffocation Of The Soul’. As soon as Jamie Lenman begins the opening lyrics “I thought that I was full of such hope and light, and such love” the fans instantly sing the words straight back at him, and this is the way it is for the entire duration of the gig. They scream, they sing, and just throw the lyrics straight back into the band’s face, and in some occasions they even overpower Jamie‘s voice through their amplifiers.

A few songs later the band play ‘Everytime A Teenager Listens To Drum & Bass, A Rockstar Dies’, and during the drum sample opening Jamie starts doing a robot dance, “Everyone join in and do the robot dance”, and just like that over half the crowd join in with Jamie and Jon‘s techno dancing. Clearly a band who aren’t afraid to reveal their humourous side and give their fans a good laugh along with their performance.

A few songs further into the set and the band come to play recent single release ‘Deadly Lethal Ninja Assassin’, but before they even play a single note Jamie grabs a huge heavy metal guitar, but has trouble trying to plug it into his effects pedals, and rants to the crowd afterwards “This bad boy’s more trouble than it’s worth… but I look awesome!” and the entire venue sends out a chuckle, another humorous venture. The night is coming to a close, and Reuben play the last song on their set list flawlessly, ‘A Short History Of Nearly Everything’, and just like every other song on their set their fans are singing back every word like a melodic serenade.

The last screams end what came to be a fantastic night out, underdogs Reuben do it once again. When a band’s live performace is of this level and calibre, it’s a wonder why this band aren’t much bigger already. They’ve got the skill, the technique, the humour, and have certainly got the dedication in their fans.

Written by Zach Redrup