“That rock’n’roll, it just won’t go away. It might hibernate from time to time, and sink back into the swamp.. But it’s always waiting there”, Arctic Monkeys maverick Alex Turner once infamously said at the BRIT awards. The rock icon does have a point, with the rise in popularity of genres like grime and rap, guitar music has been declining in popularity. However in Liverpool, just around the corner from the bustling clubs of Concert Square is The Zanzibar, one of the city’s most intimate live music venues.
‘This Feeling‘ is a rock’n’roll club night which tours the UK bringing exposure to some of the freshest unsigned bands around the UK. Friday’s This Feeling circus brought Cheshire lads The Luka State to the attention of Scouse revellers with an assault of big riffs and catchy chorus hooks upon the audience. As the band launch onto the stage a swarm of Paul Weller haircuts and Fred Perry shirts begin to filter around the audience as the band make their way on stage, looking every inch inspired by predecessors Catfish and The Bottlemen and The Courteneers. There seems to be a strange parallel universe here where indie rock guitar music is having its resurrection.
As The Luka State rip into the big riffs of their first track, the sea of heads begins to bob, a good sign that things are going well. Frontman Conrad Ellis’ gravelly voice possesses a spirited tone which encompasses the room and is chased by the ill-mannered bass and effusive percussion. The crowd respond well to Ellis’ invitation of handclaps and repeat-after-me chants, but no one is singing the lyrics back just yet. He acts every inch the frontman of a guitar band with profanities being his every other word and his interaction with the crowd, even wandering into the crowd mid-set.
New single Lies ! Lies ! Lies ! is the highlight of the set, an earworm of a song with a big chorus that definitely wouldn’t be out of place in bigger venues. There’s a lot of passionate, feral angst contained within the set and proves why guitar music still possesses a cult following.
The Luka State are hardly innovative as they fit to the mould of indie rock that entraps their predecessors such as The Courteneers, Milburn and The Pigeon Detectives, but there is no denying their ability to captivate the crowd. An exciting, energetic live band that are well worth a trip to your local grass roots venue for.
Check out their music here .