While an androgynous individual dressed only in fishnets, nipple tape and a leather jacket emblazoned with “FUCK TORY BRITAIN” sprays the Bristol crowd with champagne, RAT BOY takes to the stage.
The first few songs are received warmly, but it takes the third tune, MOVE, to really get the crowd going. A group of fifteen year olds in oversized t-shirts snarl at each other from across the mosh pit, before songsmith and singer Jordan Cardy shouts at them to do as the title of the song suggests. This gets the crowd bouncing which continues until the sweet, sweaty end.
After MOVE the band rushes through an energetic set. GET OVER IT and SPORTSWEAR are standouts. About 20 minutes in, I bump into two members of the support band, Indigo Husk. I tell them they were good; they tell me they like me.
All is well.
Near the end, every band member except the drummer abandons their instrument, to sing and jump around the stage. Their enthusiasm can’t be faulted. Front man Jordan proclaims that “Security are cunts”, while getting a fan onstage resulting in the band being dragged off.
But it doesn’t matter how scripted the scenario seems, when, to the sound of sirens RAT BOY reappears on stage and the crowd are reawakened in to a frenzy. They go on to play Sign On and FAKE ID, the best songs of the night.
As the crowd files out I notice that a band member, at some point during the forty-five minute set has graffitied on the wall of the venue, maybe the bad boy image isn’t all show after all?
Credit must also be given to support act Bad Sounds who, despite one member wearing a Hotline Bling level coat, delivered a disco feel that got the room in gear. They’re headlining the Exchange on November 30th; get excited.