The Joiners Arms, Southampton

We arrive at the venue at around 8.10 to find tonight’s openers Subdued are already on stage. With no band info to hand I’ll assume this 3 piece are Southampton-based. The sound is distinctly rock & somewhat heavy in places, mixed in with some heartfelt lyrics on a couple of numbers. Looking around me there’s barely 20 in attendance, one hopes the headliners swell the numbers. Subdued continue playing uncomplicated rock in a somewhat ‘subdued’ (sic) way! There’s hints of Pearl Jam in at least 2 of the songs but they end to warm applause.

The numbers have increased by the time The Morphic Fields arrive on stage. These four youngsters have clearly brought their mates with them! Their sound is more a Rock/Funk amalgamation but the sound is heavily influenced. More Pearl Jam & a heavy smattering of Chilli’s & your somewhere near. They clearly have talent but it lies in a bygone era. Nevertheless Dan’s vocals are honest & heartfelt, even if the music doesn’t sit kindly with this reviewer. They’ll have no problem getting supports-youth is on their side, while the crowd once again are generous with their applause.

So, a welcome return to tonight’s headliners The Primitives. Sadly the numbers are sparse (barely 60 I’d say),but the band do what they do best. Last time out was the comeback-this time they are touring new material from forthcoming EP ‘Never Kill A Secret’. Where better to start than with ‘Stick With You’ followed by a raw ‘Stop Killing Me’. Tracy looks as stunning as ever in a black & white number as she cavorts left to right. Her red hair matching her boots, belt & tambourine but this is no White Stripes makeover! More classics follow in the shape of ‘Really Stupid’ & ‘Nothing Left’ although tonight’s performance is less polished than last time out. PJ’s guitars are confident throughout while Tig’s percussion appears effortless. Ralph Moore has slotted in quietly to fill the void left by the late Steve Dullaghan but doesn’t look out of place.

‘Sick of it All’ gets the biggest cheer of the ‘older’ material before we get the first offering of new the shape of ‘Need All The Help I Can Get’ which is a pleasant little number despite being a cover. PJ announces how he hates performing ‘Crash’, then quickly retracts before giving us the opening bars. Title track from the new EP ‘Never Kill A Secret’ is a little twee but is nevertheless new. First glitch of the night arrives with PJ struggling to tune up for ‘Way Behind Me’. A full 5 minutes are taken before we get the song but its worth the wait. Another new one is aired in the shape of ‘Rattle My Cage’ before a raucous ‘Way To The Sun’. The Primitives may never grace the Top 5 again but live they still rank up there with the best. Just a shame the Joiners is half full tonight.

Set List
Stick With You
Stop Killing Me
Really Stupid
Nothing Left
You Are The Way
Summer Rain
Sick Of It All
Buzz Buzz Buzz
Thru’ The Flowers
Need All The Help I Can Get
Never Kill A Secret
Way Behind Me
Rattle My Cage
Way To The Sun


Ross Ferrone

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