Growing to become a must see band
Morning Runner are fast growing into one of this summer's must see festival acts. Their second Main Stage performance in the past few weeks saw them play second from the top at the Electric Gardens, one down from indy legends The Charlatans, a responsibility they looked totally at home with.
The Reading band opened their set with 'Be All You Want Me To Be', the single that really set the ball rolling for them in 2005, and was missing from the Guilfest set I reviewed in July.
This was followed by their catchy acoustic single 'The Great Escape', with the brilliant 'Punching Walls' also appearing early on.
They played through most of debut album 'Wilderness Is Paradise Now' but also treated the Kent crowd to early demo tracks which has been absent from setlists for some time.
Matthew Greener has a great live voice, something that doesn't always come across well on CD. With many of the acts on before his band producing similar sounding, punk inspired alternative rock, Morning Runner brought a more mellow and refreshingly different style to Electric Gardens.
The first track from their album, which often opens their sets 'It's Not Like Everyone's My Friend', and 'Gone Up In Flames', appeared towards the end, the latter meant they were going out on more rocky terms.
Biggest hit 'Burning Benches', which was unfairly labeled by some as Morning Runner's answer to 'Yellow' by Coldplay, is a regular set closer, and brought proceedings to their climax here.
As many singers do at festivals, Greener hoped we enjoyed the headliner, in this case The Charlatans, but Morning Runner had definitely left a great impression on this crowd themselves. Given their style of music the fans weren't as energized, and bouncing off metaphorical walls as they were with The Automatic or Fratellis, but Morning Runner have a collection of songs that is more varied and stronger throughout the set than those acts.
Their next UK festival appearances are on the Main Stage at the Summer Sundae Weekend on August 13th, and V the following weekend.