LIVE: RX Bandits @ Academy 3, Manchester (31/01/2014)

Date: January 31st, 2014
Venue: Academy 3, Manchester
Support: Astpai


This highly anticipated tour sees Californian tech punks RX Bandits deliver an extensive set, consisting of their 2003 sophomore record, ‘Resignation’, played in full. The tour kicked off last summer across the pond, and it was time for the UK and mainland Europe to once again sample the groundbreaking exploits of the RX Bandits in a live setting and in plentiful glory.

Opening band Astpai (***), hailing from Wiener Neustadt, Austria awkwardly take to stage and introduce themselves to the 350 strong RX Bandits fans. It takes them a few songs to find their feet and relax into their performance. Signs of fatigue are evident throughout, but the quartet march onwards with their steady brand of euro punk rock. The songs sit well and are executed passionately from frontman Zock Astpai (not just a clever name), making this a commendable night at the office and bagging some new fans for the Astpai camp.

The very second the house lights go down and tonight’s headliners confidently announce themselves onto the stage the eager crowd erupts into mass applause and child-like hysteria. Tonight’s audience, like so many on this tour are of the die-hard fan calibre.

The musicianship on display from RX Bandits (*****) is nothing short of exemplary. Well-crafted big hit follows big hit as the ‘Resignation’ album delivers a note perfect live performance. The backline is solid and the band is one of the tightest units you’ll witness in any venue. No signs of rust or reservation and a distinct enjoyment for the songs and playing live to a UK audience for the first time in a long time are evident.

The main set finishes with album closer, ‘Decrescendo’, proving to be a particular highlight of the night. After a quick alcohol break, the band emerge for an encore that captivates the audience as much as the full album set. Fan favourites, as ‘Only For The Night’ and ‘In Her Drawer’ cement this momentous night as one to remember for a long time.

A new album is being penned for release later this year, so expect to see RX Bandits back in the UK and all over the festival circuit this summer.

Written by Nik Taylor