Live Review

Eugene McGuinness, The Leadmill, Sheffield

Tracks from Eugene’s recent album are all belters, each as magnificent live as they are on record.

It’s clear that Eugene McGuinness and his band are the snazziest dressers in the Leadmill tonight as they confidently take the stage but first up are Coves, a boy/girl duo who have gathered lots of buzz over the last few months.

It’s a small crowd, which is a shame because their scuzzy set manages to impress nonetheless. Their stripped back sound is part Echo And The Bunnymen and part Dusty Springfield: their brilliantly lo-fi cover of Chris Isaak’s ‘Wicked Game’ easily being the highlight of the set.

However, the crowd grows and pushes forward for Eugene and, despite only being half full tonight, the Leadmill fills up with rapturous applause, mainly from the swooning girls huddled at the front.

Tracks from Eugene’s recent album are all belters, each as magnificent live as they are on record. ‘Harlequinade’ is a blistering opener, a dance floor filler that meshes Little Boots’ electro stomp with a Playboy party soundtrack. Further on ‘Japanese Cars’ sends Talking Heads-like jitters through the room whilst ‘Lion’ is a spooky little number, erupting flimsily (in a good way) through the Leadmill’s dank depths. Slow burners like ‘Joshua’ and ‘Invitation…’ are great too but only highlight how McGuinness performs best when confidently pumping out club bangers like ‘Thunderbolt.’

Elsewhere, older tracks ‘Fonz’ and ‘Moscow State Circus’ excite all the older fans but set closers ‘Sugarplum’ and ‘Shotgun’ end the night in electrifying fashion. The former has a finger-clicking swagger that’s as charismatic as Eugene himself whilst the latter, easily his most popular song to date, triggers the loudest reaction of the night. The tunes are MASSIVE (capitals definitely needed). Now someone please put this man in a stadium. Right now.

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