The Bright Black – AATMA, Manchester – 16/04/16

*Photograph comes courtesy of Seagrave Social Photography.

Just off Stevenson Square there is a place you just can’t help but love. Take a walk down the shifty little alleyway of 14-16 Faraday Street and be brave enough to step behind the graffiti covered door; leading you to a small (also graffiti covered) staircase. If at this point you are thinking to yourself – ‘am I in the right place?!’ – then yes, you almost definitely are. You’ll soon find yourself slap bang in the middle of the lions den, so to speak. You will be greeted by warm friendly faces, likeminded band geeks and musicians playing music that will literally rock your world. Aatma is one of Manchester’s greatest hidden gems – and a personal favourite venue for the best live music in town.

Tonight, Aatma were hosting a single release party for The Bright Black. And being lucky enough to have been invited to come along, I was so eager to see what these local boys had to offer. However, first on the stage that evening was a band named TAMSYN. These fresh faced boys (along with their super eager parents) were ready to get the crowd on their feet. Considering this was their first ever live show together, you really wouldn’t have guessed – these guys were seamlessly good. Their upbeat indie melodies were catchy as hell and even though the crowd at this point was relatively small, they got us all warmed up for the night ahead. My only criticism? Lose the leather jackets lads! 3 out of 5 band members sporting this leather look is never cool.

Next on the stage to get us moving were the uber-cool guys from Liverpool who formed Venus Demilo. Having heard of these boys before, I knew what to expect. These guys really knew what they were doing. Effortlessly awesome from start to finish. They set the tone for the night with their pop/rock vibes and their almost angelic vocals. Playing a few of their hits such as ‘Amsterdam’, ‘Sinking Ships’ and ‘Sophia’ they were massive crowd pleaser’s and easy on the eyes. Any band who leaves a bag of Haribo at the front of the stage is a winner in my eyes!

Finally, the band we had all been waiting for took to the stage. My first thought – how under-dressed am I?! These guys oozed sass and style from head to toe. The guitarist looking like he had literally stepped straight out of the 70’s rocking a silk shirt and sporting a moustache that men around the globe can only ever dream of having. These guys had all eyes in the room on them – and they knew it. They teased us with old favourites such as ‘Ain’t Thinking about That’ and ‘Because The Moonlight’. These guys have style, attitude and charisma. They wowed the crowd with their long awaited single ‘Skin on Skin’ and finally finished the night off with what is arguably their most popular song; ‘Ink’. While the crowd was predominantly friends and family of the band members, you can’t deny that this band really could be a big deal. The crowd went wild for the sexy hip swaying tunes  – and if you don’t believe me, check these guys out for yourself.

Skin on Skin is out on Spotify now.