Linchpin - Manchester Academy 2 - 4.6.05

The best rock bands always ignore the zeitgeist and sneak up in the slipstream before seemingly coming out of nowhere. Who could have imagined that little known Welsh rockers Lostprophets and Funeral For A Friend would become Britain's biggest exports? Or who could have predicted Lowestoft's finest The Darkness would be stadium fodder less than 12 months after they inked a deal?

Linchpin are a band that are going to confuse people and divide critics the world over, but Britain's best new rock band with an average age of 14 / 15 are the band that are single handledly going to revive punk-pop's rotting corpse and banish the emo boys back to their bedsit's sobbing away until they've written a decent album. Not that Linchpin are a straightforward punk pop band in the role of Blink 182 or Good Charlotte (the latter  incidentally produced their debut single) as the quartet owe as much to the classic rock of the Stones.

It's not only the fact that "Girl Next Door" and "Be Like You" stick in your head long after they leave the stage, or the fact that the ballad "Apple Of My Eye" is the sort of epic song Simple Plan or Hoobastank constantly try to write. It's the fact that even though Linchpin are opening for Fightstar on the bottom of the bill they have the confidence of a band playing arena's and it's infectious to watch. This confidence is entirely warranted and if tonight is anything to go by Linchpin will be the biggest rock band in Britain in a couple of years. Their youthful good looks are as appealing to fans of McFly and Rooster as they are to My Chemical Romance and Lostprophets fans, teenage boys can relate to the lyrics and older fans can't deny that the musicianship and songwriting towers above most of the bands they've been listening to for the past 10 years.

You can either get on board now or you can jump on the bandwagon later down the line. Either way you're not going to be able escape this band soon and the chances are once you hear them they'll become your favourite new band.

Alex McCann

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