What to do on a Wednesday night? Skipping Wind Street, we went down to Sin City to check out their first Live and Local Night of 2013 with Swansea University’s Live Music Society.

Live and Local is a wonderful idea that could only have been thought-up by one particular Swansea venue. With such a passion for live music it was always going to take place at Sin City, offering local music acts the chance to showcase their talent to a live audience, with all ticket sales going right back to the bands to fund their work and maybe even a couple of beers at the end of the night.

Live and Local

Opening act Aidan Peppin showcased a lovely voice: raw, husky, with good range and professional control. His guitar technique was simple which worked for individual songs but turned repetitive when it became clear that there was going to be a lack of variation. He picked some decent, non-cliché covers for an acoustic act and there were some decent original songs thrown in for good measure, so overall a surprisingly strong performance from the show opener.

Second act Nick Skelton had an excellent guitar-picking technique, and pleasant, rough vocals. He didn’t seem as focused as he could have been and tended to drift during instrumentals. However there were several strong moments and some great original songs. An unfortunate moment involving a loose cable interrupted his last song but he recovered well and finished to an appreciative crowd.

PRAYNTELL had lots of energy and there was a good show of talent, in particular, and very unusually, from the drummer. Vocals were over-aggressive and at some points downright bizarre, but overall the band gave a solid, passionate performance.

The lead singer for Crikey & The Whoopsies seemed to have an unfortunate penchant for the word “slut” which may have been why an overwhelming majority of the songs performed were about girls and STDs. Although the band were certainly able to handle the instrumentals, the lead vocals were raucous and the lyrics immature. This band definitely has a lot of potential to improve and they did well for a first gig; someone just needs to tell whoever’s writing the lyrics that misogyny doesn’t make a good band gimmick in 2013.

There was a nice funky cover of the Pirates of the Caribbean theme tune as the opening number from the Singletons, who closed the night. After that things went a bit downhill as the following songs lacked the technical ability shown in the first and instead involved more shouting and waving from the band members, along with a very embarrassing “make some noise” from the lead vocalist.  The first couple of bars to Rusted Roots’ “Send me on my Way” lifted my spirits for a second before they were crushed again by a not-very-faithful cover. This band is endearing in its enthusiasm and definitely holds a lot of individual talent but I felt they looked out of place in Sin City and would have been more at home playing to their strengths in Noah’s Yard.

By Roisin O’Connor

Do you know any local acts who deserve recognition? Let us know by emailing sirenswansea_music@hotmail.co.uk

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