For a band with a million-and-one different sounds, Pennsylvania birthed THE MENZINGERS dabble in everything from angsty, punk-laden anthems to delicately constructed ballads. For a packed out set at Manchester‘s O2 Ritz almost a year to the date of AFTER THE PARTY, aka their most complete studio album to date, it was an opportunity for UK fans to hear it across twenty sweetly delivered tracks.
Kicking things straight off with the musically upbeat, lyrically self-destroying Tellin’ Lies, via walking on to the theme tune from It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia, it instantly became obvious that this was going to be a night of intense passion. Naturally, After the Party dominated the setlist, but Greg Barnett and Tom May commanded the ship that delved deep into the likes of On the Impossible Past and Rented World.
What the PA outfit do exceptionally well is write lyrics that are perfect for barking at the top of your voice. I Don’t Wanna Be an Asshole Anymore‘s roaring choruses are perfect example of this, and it was screamed by everyone inside the 1,500 capacity venue as the evening neared its end. Steering through sing along modern classics Thick as Thieves and Your Wild Years set up this magnificent finale magnificently.
Fan favourite Lookers was given an elegant rendition with everyone from Barnett and May to those on the balcony pouring their heart into screaming it at the top of their voice. Leaving the stage briefly afterwards before returning with The Shakes sandwiched in between the anger-fuelled After the Party and closer In Remission.
The Pennsylvania band have once again cemented their status as one of the most passionate and humble bands to grace a UK stage and it is no surprise they are already planning on returning to the capital in summer. Tickets for that show are available here.