I Fly Spitfires@Cabaret Voltaire, Edinburgh, Thu 6 Sep
Between the broad north-east English accents, quirky vocal harmonies and tunes possessing more angles than a job lot of geometry sets, Chester-Le-Street quintet Catweasels will be constantly dogged by comparisons with The Futureheads. The similarities are too hard to ignore, particularly since the band are even signed to Futureheads front man Ross Millard’s own label, Longest Mile Records.
That’s not to suggest they aren’t good of course – far from it. ‘This is Just the Nightime, Andy’, for one, is an epic song, floated on a big, draughty synth line and with peaks as high and numerous as the Himalayas. Bass-playing front man Sam Megahy is a bundle of spaghetti-legged energy and always an exhilarating watch – even if he does look more Nick Faldo than Nick Valensi in a shirt-and-tie combo.
You still feel Catweasel are struggling to drag people beyond the broad strokes of their sound however: every time they break out into a trademark Geordie voiced three-part harmony, as thrilling as it may be, it can’t help but recall their more famous Sunderland-based peers to the detail. And when the musical gene pool gets this shallow, you do worry.