The Dark Eyes and Spacement Apes – Fixxion Warehouse, Wolverhampton, 17th January 2014

Big festivals and headline bands are where live music junkies tend to spend most of their dwindling their disposable cash. Yet the lucky few who rolled into the Fixxion Warehouse in Wolverhampton on Friday evening last week were treated to thumping rhythms and some sublime musicianship.

Getting the show really going was the second act, The Dark Eyes. The five piece band of two guitars and keyboards got heads banging with some metal infused blues guitar, before reworking Monkees classic ‘I’m a Believer’. Well drilled with a composed lead in Jordan Carrier, their short set is over too soon and you are left wanting more. The band claims on its Facebook page that its blend of styles is easily stripped down to an acoustic setting; although the amps were turned up throughout, it would be interesting to see if they could maintain the same energy with just strings and wood.

Slowing things down in tempo but raising the atmospheric pressure, the Spacement Apes took to the stage with a slow take on the Link Wray tune ‘Rumble’. Lead singer and guitarist Jordan Harris oozes confidence and marshals the band throughout a foot stomping routine of bluesy rock, with undertones of Oasis coming through. Their new single ‘Somebody Told Me’ is due out soon and it is a real highlight, representing a mature path being set by the band.

One criticism that could be leveled at the Apes is that their songs never take you to boiling point. But you are kept on the edge and engrossed throughout so that it in the end, that boiling point doesn’t appear to be needed. In times of austerity and economic and social depression, particularly in former industrial town’s like Wolverhampton, new small venues like the Fixxion need support as well as the local bands that give them life.

A night like this was value for money and listening to melodies that sooth the soul may not lead to a recovery or a revolution, but is the kind of constructive escapism that is badly needed in these difficult times.

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.