disbanded – ep 4: The Paddingtons

It was autumn 2006, a few of us piled into a car and took the short trip to Bristol. The venue was the Anson Rooms. The band was the Paddingtons.

Well, actually, the venue was the Anson Rooms two. A broom cupboard sized side room with a small bar at the back and a tiny stage at the front. I’ve been in bigger bathrooms. However, as anyone who has attended intimate shows like this one knows, they are the best, and for me out do any arena gig.

This gig was made even better because we didn’t know what to expect. We had heard a couple of songs from this indie/pop-punk five piece. I don’t think their first album was even out yet.

The support act were an unknown (outside of the Coventry area, anyway) three piece, called The Enemy. They went on to release on of the best debut albums of the decade, along with the Paddingtons’ First Comes First.

And it’s that debut album that I want to focus on.

The reason I started the disBANDed series was to champion those albums that you pick up and put down over many years, getting that same buzz of energy, that same “fuck yeah” moment that you got the first time you listened. You relive the adventure and experience, the desire to pick up the phone, dial your best friend and tell them to get said record. This album could have been released yesterday and still made an impact.

My favourite characteristic of any rock, punk song is duelling guitars. Both battling for attention; guitarists busting their wrists to get the maximum noise from their instrument. This record has that characteristic in abundance. I love this record for its energy, you instantly feel what a live show from these guys will be like. You can taste the sweat.

Sat on top of that rippling duvet of guitars are the vocals. The lyrics of every song are like tucking into your favourite meal – comforting. Had a bad day? The words are so singable you’ll be gripping your hairbrush and prancing in front of the mirror forgetting all about it in the first 30 seconds of the opening track, Some Old Girl. Their blend of daily life and teenage angst isn’t anything new or ground breaking, but they do it so well that it is a strangely refreshing take on well explored territory.

I’m currently sat watching back some of their music videos on Youtube, and I can’t help but notice a Strokes influence in their style; musically and fashion-wise. It’s a damn fine combo.


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