Third on the bill always used to be reserved for a bunch of sad no-hopers who wanted their collective 15 minutes of cheap fame and a few quid to cover the cost of one or two warm beers.

Leeds’ the Cribs, however, are a fine exception to the rule and despite taking the stage at a ridiculously early 7.30pm, rock the Apollo like they own the place.

Frontman, Ryan Jarman, may be the undoubted ace in their pack, with his boundless energy, but the rest of the band are also natural performers and belt through set opener, 'Hey Scenesters!' with an infectious swagger that ensures the rapidly expanding crowd becomes instantly involved.

Expectedly the recent singles are the ones that get the biggest reactions with 'Martell' and the excellent 'Mirror Kissers' going down great. Older tracks, however, are also greeted knowingly, a clear indication that this may be the Kaiser’s show, but rhe Cribs have also have a blossoming fan base that can only grow further on the strength of performances like this.

I guarantee that they will not be many more third billings for these boys (save for the odd festival) but sadly tonight that means they only get half an hour before they are gone. A fine thirty minutes though.

Maximo Park are also a real treat and worth the entrance money alone. They may only be one album old, but such is the quality of the record that playing it almost in its entirety tonight does not mean there are holes in the set.

Singer, Paul Smith, and keyboard player, Lukas Wooller, spend most of the time between singing/playing dancing like short-circuiting robots. This ensures that not only is the music fantastic, but the audience are transfixed to the stage, enthralled in this bizarre duel for attention.

They are clearly a band enjoying themselves and brimful of confidence, shown by the way that classic singles 'Graffiti' and 'The Coast Is Always Changing' are fired off so early in the set. B-side 'Fear Of Falling' and brand newie 'Wasteland' are also given a rare live outing but there is no let up in quality throughout. The band finish with a riotous version of 'Apple Some Pressure' and leave to a tremendous ovation.

Amazingly it’s the headliners, the Kaiser Chiefs, who are the biggest disappointment. Sure they have a born entertainer in singer Ricky Wilson and the band certainly know how to play, but in truth they don’t have enough quality songs to fill their set.

Opener 'Saturday Night' is solid enough, 'I Predict A Riot'is great and new single 'Modern Way' is a definite highlight. Elsewhere slowie, 'You Can Have It All', during which Ricky dragged a delighted teenage girl up on stage and proceeded to serenade her, is half decent, but the rest is a bit stodgy.

By the time they murder 'I Heard It Through The Grapevine' during the encore it almost seems like a blessing that Marvin Gaye is no longer with us. Predictably, they finish with novelty single 'Oh My God', which will surely be viewed on a par with the Cheeky Girls in years to come.

Needless to say for all their failings, the kids still loved them.

Related Links:

Commenting On: Apollo, Manchester, 15/10/2005 - Kaiser Chiefs, Maximo Park and the Cribs

ie London, England

tick box before submitting comment

First Previous Next Last