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:: The Bandits ::
29 October 2003 / Academy 3 / Manchester
By J.O.

Fresh from tour support from the likes of Oasis, Paul Weller and The Vines, scouse rockers ‘The Bandits’ returned to Manchester, this time at the Academy 3, to fulfil what has been a very prosperous year for them. Having just released their debut album ‘And They Walked Away’, and having strong success from their singles ‘Take It And Run’ and '2 Step Rock’, The Bandits look likely favourites for much more to follow next year.

The diversity in The Bandits style makes them a difficult act to categorise, yet this is something which highly elevates them from the ‘new wave scene’. If the ‘country rockers’ are up your street then they are well worth going to see as their true identity can be found in the live set. The band gave a fulfilling and energetic performance, churning off live favourites such as ‘Take It...’, and ‘The Warning’. Excellent vocals groovy dances made The Bandits very entertaining to watch; only in parts did their songs lack a firmly gripping hook line and occasionally sounded samey.

But The band’s live performance does however contain a certain quality which is rarely found with many of today’s ‘rock’ acts. This is the ideal balance between confidence and attitude, without becoming annoying. Front man John Robinson manages to capture the swagger of Liam Gallagher, contrasting this with his own interpretation of being a front man. This, to The Bandits credibility, gives them full marks in stage presence, with them not only playing a musically tight set, but a visual inspiring one as well.

As much as you can label them as ‘just another scouse band’, you can just as easily distinguish what makes them strong favourites for the up rise. This can be found in how they have so much stage presence without trying to be anything at all. Image is everything with The Bandits although in an obscure way, their image is the traditional rock n roll ‘roughed up’ look.

Having seen The Bandits twice before I knew exactly what to expect, which was a positive as they certainly didn’t disappoint.


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