Gnarwolves / Prawn - Live in Nottingham (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Gnarwolves / Prawn

Live in Nottingham (2014)

live show

Gnarwolves. A band who have gone quickly from strength to strength; being a small DIY band to playing the main stage at Reading and Leeds. Now, their first UK headline tour playing venues a step up. Just for context, Manchester Orchestra and The Lawrence Arms recently headlined the same room.

Main support on this tour are the stunning Prawn. Entirely different from Gnarwolves, a friend pointed out that they sound somewhere between Brand New and Explosions in the Sky. That is the perfect explanation. Starting a bit early, they jumped right into a few songs from album of the year contender, Kingfisher. The songs translated surprisingly well in the live setting, especially the more dramatic, instrumental parts. Throwing themselves behind every track, the band played a passionate 30-minute set which went by in the blink of an eye.

It was time for Gnarwolves and the room filled up substantially. Kicking off with “Bottle to Bottle” off their self-titled debut full-length, the crowd were immediately off their feet, jumping and crashing into one another. The band followed it up with more new songs. However, it was when they moved into older material that they big singalongs really started; “Melody Has Big Plans,” “History is Bunk” and “Coffee” were greeted as pop-punk classics, while during “Community, Stability, Identity,” the crowd were almost louder than the band.

Gnarwolves’ brand of pop-punk is a lot punk-ier than most. Fleeting between pure pop-punk and aggressive skate-punk in seconds. One thing is certain though -- no matter what you make of their previous releases, they are an extremely fun band to watch live, which I believe mostly comes from the fact that they don’t take themselves to seriously and just play their songs with tons of energy and no gimmicks. I wonder where they’ll be in a year’s time.