Morning Runner with support from The Race (Night & Day Café, Manchester 24/10/05)

Morning Runner

The Race strode onto the stage to set the pace for an evening of exploration into the more hurried end of the indie genre that came out in the thrilling 'Raising Children'. Front man Andy Aitken and his four musical musketeers, possessed vitality and made a stern effort to shake off their Monday blues and everybody else's for that matter, especially with their disco kick. A stirring sound whipped around the cosily rustic surroundings and was on full show in the resounding and bolstering; 'Amersham Road'. Aitken's yearning vocals trundled along on the back of strolling guitars to pull off a contemplative offering that gave some depth to the set.

The crowd huddled together towards the front like cold trick or treat players, as they were keen to catch a prolonged peek at the band that has wooed Coldplay gatherers and added oil to the expectant, indie rumour mill. The epitome of the no thrills, but straightforward and honest ethos; Morning Runner hit off with the crashing keyboard catapulted; 'Work'.

Mathew Greener's presence was intriguing, as his powerfully commanding vocals were juxtaposed by shy and retiring between song utterances. Whereby, he struggled to splutter out his message to the crowd to discard all that they had heard about the band and to judge them on tonight's performance. However, it was a message well heeded going by the rousing reception given to the fourth number and previous single 'Gone Up In Flames'. Greener's voice became deeper and possessed a nasal approach for this worried tale that is an anthem for the lacklustre.

Bassist Tom was the navigator in this band's musical journey of self discovery; playing with boldness and focus all evening, reaching a highpoint in a wandering offering; 'The Great Escape'. Considering that this band formed under two years ago; they display compactness and a great understanding to produce captivating numbers like the pleading new single 'Be All That You Want Me To Be'. Those seeking some good old fashioned Rock & Roll featuring a throbbing jam, were duly indulged in set ender; 'Burning Brides' that will be just one of the tracks to look out for when the debut album hits the public domain. The air of expectancy is rising like fog on a November morning around this Berkshire outfit, but on tonight's performance they are more than ready for it.

David Adair

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