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Sunday, December 8, 2013

Muder on the Waterfont: Pop-punk weekender in Yorkshire featuring the Murderburgers & On the Waterfront

Murder on the Waterfront

In a week that has seen the east coast of England battered by storms and floods, and Boston’s own zine writer Marv Gadgie moving his record collection upstairs ‘just in case’, it was ironic to spend the start of the weekend watching a band called ‘On the Waterfront’.

Being stuck inland in Doncaster on a Friday night, my partner knew that I’d need some cultural satiation, and being as awesome as she is, somehow managed to find for me a) a pop punk band to watch, and b) a Wetherspoons pub to drink some cheap pints of ale. Miraculously, she managed to make ‘a’ and ‘b’ happen at the same time.

It was a battle of the bands night, normally an automatic stay-in, yet when you are stranded in Doncaster on a weekend, it’s a case of deal and deal. At the Old Angel Inn, ‘On the Waterfront’, fronted by the talented song writing of Craig Aylott, played a twenty minute set of more contemporary pop–punk, ala Set Your Goals.

Despite early problems with guitar tuning and a room with poor acoustics, the band made the most of this unique setting, and powered through a bunch of songs that contained a couple of catchy numbers. They are from Doncaster and they have a free 4 track EP posted here:  

When Saturday came, I managed to coax the Mrs into the big bad city of Leeds, to see some of the cream of UK pop-punk. Now in the past there has been mixed success of large American pop-punk labels signing UK bands, Snuff to Fat Wreck, and Leatherface to No Idea! equals good, The Fight to Fat Wreck and Four Letter Word to BYO equals bad. It’s always a big deal when a UK band gets a crack across the pond, and testament to being pure awesome; The Murderburgers are now part of the Asian Man Records family.

We started the night being Bonusgrouped by a very talented young punk-poet cum musician by the name of ‘Billy Liar’.  It was just him and a guitar, which 90% of the time equals shit, yet this time equalled awesome. Now this lad sang his heart out, and sang it like he meant it. He spat out his heart and emotions into the crowd, and you just can’t not appreciate and enjoy such honesty, and as a man from Scotland, he had that belligerent working class grit, which made this a helluva lot more than a crywank party. Hats off to the fella.

The Murderburgers have been going since 2007, and they are the only band who tour regular enough to come close to competing with The Dangerfields. I saw them once before when they played in someone’s living room around the corner from the Fenton pub. They were infectious then, and you could tell they knew their stuff, as they chucked in a Lillingtons cover during the set. 

Having recently toured for two months, including a trip out to the USA, and they have even amassed gigs with the hottest pop punk bands around, namely Teenage Bottelrocket, and Masked Intruder. The Murderburgers are rightfully now up there amongst them. Lead singer and guitarist Fraser Mackay, who comes from a famous punk family in Scotland (his brother has played in an array of awesome hardcore bands, currently Black Cop), is a talented songwriter, and this comes across in their songs, which are about a plethora of the classic pop punk themes: unemployment, heartache, and childish humour. Once again, they did put on an awesome show, and I was even pogo dancing on my own at the back of the room. Rammy hard!

The latest Murderburgers new album ‘These Are Only Problems” is out now on Asian Man /Monster Zero Records. 

The bonus for reading this far is that I have heard it on good authority that Masked Intruder will be playing shows in the UK in August. Hopefully the Murderburgers will be ont road supporting them.

Lukas Schwarzbrennen, Ont Road Fanzine

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