Friday, June 21, 2024

Maximo Park celebrate their singles in Manchester

With no new album tour and an immense backlog of singles, Newcastle-based indie rockers Maximo Park embark on the Singular Tour with Dutch pop rock outfit, Pip Blom

Pip Blom were the first to perform and while they are still a fairly new band to many members of the audience in Manchester, they deliver a very professional set of upbeat guitar-driven pop music that feels like it will have great crossover appeal amongst pop and rock fans once they inevitably start getting mainstream appeal. 

Pip Blom

Maximo Park eventually came on stage to ‘All of Me’, a bright and energetic track that harkens back to the new wave tracks of yesteryear that inspired them, all while giving it a modern twist. Maximo Park has an interesting look and aesthetic that can best be described as a team of cool English teachers that really love Talking Heads and Devo. 

Their new wave inspired sound is best exemplified in their synth-heavy songs like ‘High Art‘ which touches upon themes of adapting to modern day art forms and managing expectations. 

Maximo Park

As the band carried on their set it took no time at all for Paul Smith, to garner attention as an energetic and thoughtful frontman as he not only dances around the stage with the energy of someone far younger than him – but also tells stories about the songs that have become pivotal in the story of Maximo Park and have since gained cult followings. 

The setlist feels like a storytelling event told in nonlinear fashion, starting from their most recent album and jumping all throughout their career which is a massive benefit to a singles tour. When a band has an album to tour, it can be a hindrance to the set as it feels obligatory to play the new tracks and missing some of the more historical tracks that once had immense importance to everyone involved including the audience. 

Maximo Park

Modern tracks give a sense of elder introspection like ‘Version of You’ while older tracks give a wide-eyed perspective of a younger band preparing to take on the world with only a small amount of money and the help of a local label, in this case, legendary indie label Warp Records, with their 7″ single ‘The Coast is Always Changing’

The end of the setlist showcased the mega hits of their career and those most likely to be mainstream hits including the Rock Band DLC, ‘Girls who Play Guitars’, and ‘Apply Some Pressure‘. ‘Midnight Hill’ and ‘Graffiti’ were incredible moments to end an already phenomenal show. 

Maximo Park

Overall, Maximo Park may be many years into their career but they are still totally aware of the importance of remembering their roots while still allowing themselves to move forward creatively and giving the audience what they need from them. All while looking pretty fly doing it. 

All this made for a fantastic experience improved only by a stellar car park that boasted inclusivity and affordable prices from a venue (Manchester Academy) that cares as much about the audience satisfaction and ease of access as they do about putting on a show that meets the lofty expectations of its acts. 

Lamestream Lydia
Lamestream Lydia
Self-proclaimed journalist, Progressive rock enthusiast and the most American sounding person you're ever likely to meet in the North of England

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