Kinesis / Reuben / Miss Black America - Manchester Academy 3 - 12.2.03

Miss Black America's frontman Seymour Glass hails from the very un rock'n'roll town of Bury St.Edmunds. Forming the band with guitar guru Gish and two other friends the band released "Worship Here" to critical acclaim and an adoring underground cult. Just one month after the album was released the band disbanded amongst various rumours of a dictatorship in the band and after moving to Brighton Seymour had a change of heart and recruited Simon Cooper (drums), Mat Anthony (guitar) and Johnny Steel (bass). Dedicated supporters of the Anti Nazi League the band opened the Love Music Hate Racism festival in Manchester last September and they have the pure punk spirit of the Clash - Seymour is a human time bomb just waiting to explode.

Former single "Talk Hard" with it's Elvis Costello raspy vocal is rock personified with enough melody to win over the indie kids. Their calling card "Miss Black America" and the punchy yet emotive "Jamming By Numbers" with it's Thin Lizzy guitar riffs are amazing. With such a powerful presence Seymour Glass is more like a solo singer (again fuelling the dictatorship rumours) and surrounded by what can only be described as three session musicians rather than a fully fledged rock band. Too good as an opening act, Miss Black America should be headlining on this package tour.

Reuben are a very American sounding 3 piece for which the phrase "metal by numbers" was made for. At times they sound a little bit like the Foo Fighters, but without the tunes to go with it. The question of whether they can rock isn't even up for debate and a few of their songs have those nugget melodies, but it's little cliched and predictable to make a real impact. The in-between song chat from the lead singer with his public school ascent and a tendency to say man at the end of every sentence is at best naive and at worst plain embarrassing. This Manchester lad, not LA!!!

Headlining this tour are Kinesis and would you believe it they're another 3 piece. This time hailing from Bolton and with an average age of 18 the band have the Manic's political spiel down to a tea with Tom (bass) and Conor (lead guitar) the spokesmen for the band. Being the closest to a hometown show you're going to get the place is rammed and despite the fact they've yet to release an album proper (Ed: their self-financed mini album "Worship Yourself" sold out in weeks and is probably changing hands on Ebay for 10 times it's original value) the crowd know every single word to the likes of "....And They Obey", "Everything Destroys Itself" and "Flowers". While Conor has been thrust into the spotlight creating weird and wonderful noises with the greatest of ease, Mike's vocals have a tendency to be a bit on the whiny side, but he's an affable frontman (if not the political heavyweight we'd expect) that's soon forgiven.

Summary: Kinesis are good. Miss Black America we can't praise highly enough and Reuben are strictly average. Something for everyone from 3 of Britain's most promising new bands.

Nicholas Paul Godkin

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