For anyone who never got the chance to see The Filaments first time round, the fact that they're back with new material and as noisy as ever is excellent news. After seeing them with Capdown at the end of last year, this was their first London gig of 2012 and it was sold out as well. With the prospect of £2.50 pints in the air, things could only end well!
Of course, due to London transport being generally shite on weekends, we missed the Skets and most of Stand Out Riot. We caught a bit of the latter's set though, and they're definitely a band worth checking out. I'd wanted to get there to see their set but never mind. They've been described as "like watching Zebrahead if they were fronted by Spongebob", or Gogol Bordello meets Streetlight Manifesto. The Gogol Bordello comparisons are probably simply due to the fact there's a violin thrown into the mix, but due to the lack of violins in ska punk these days I've deemed that it can only be a good thing.
Jakal were up next and the place was getting fuller by the second. If anyone listened to the Shot in the Foot comp we put out a while back then you'll know that Jakal's track 'Junkyard' was on there. They didn't play that but played a good mix of punk-reggae tracks from their repertoire. They seemed to get a bit of a mixed reaction from the crowd which was a shame, although that could be down to the bouncers chucking someone out for lighting up a spliff and generally throwing their weight around. I liked their set though, so that's all that matters for the purpose of this review. They're regulars on the London gig scene so no doubt they'll pop up in another review soon.
Finally the Filaments took to the stage. They'd promised a mix of old and new songs and that's exactly what we got. The sound was spot on for them, and opening with BPC just set the tone for the rest of the set! They ripped through most of What's Next and Skulls and Trombones with the same amount if not more aggression than ever before. I don't remember a lot of the titles to their new tracks but they fit into the set perfectly and, apart from a couple of false starts, seemed as though they'd played them for years. One new track that especially stood out for me was 'Statistic' which will presumably be on their new album. The only track missing from their set was Bastard Coppers, but when all was said and done they played all you needed to jump around, spill your beer, and sing at the top of your lungs. They also brought up the point that we still need to fight the facists - check the link at the bottom of the review.
All in all an excellent night and hopefully with the release of a new album plenty more Filaments shows to come this year!