Feeder return to showcase forthcoming album

British rock favourites Feeder make a welcome return this month with new album Silent Cry and have just completed a number of intimate shows, in order to try out the new material live. This show at Bristol’s ‘Thekla’ venue was both the final, and most unusual, leg of the tour • the Thekla is in fact a refurbished boat moored in Bristol’s historic mud dock, which gives the venue and atmosphere a fantastic character.

The tiny tin boat was packed to the rafters due to the small amount of tickets available • approximately 750. It was surreal to see Feeder, so accustomed to arena dates these days, back on a small stage all cramped together, but that is what this tour was all about; getting back to basics, back to what they do best.

So does this rhetoric also apply to the music? Indeed it does. The new material sees a return to the band’s heavier leanings, yet maintains the incredibly melodic and catchy essence that is Feeder’s trademark. For the Feeder veteran the material is similar to that of the Echo Park and Comfort in Sound era, which is no bad thing I’m sure you will agree.

The band open with singalong favourite ‘Feeling a Moment’, complete with ‘ooohs’ and ‘aaahs’ aplenty followed by crowd pleaser ‘Shatter’. This served to warm-up the crowd nicely before leading into new single ‘We Are the People’, which while not being instantly catchy is certainly a grower and went down well regardless. A good album track, but maybe not a great choice of single, time will tell. The other new tracks were all well received but ‘Who’s the Enemy’ and ‘Itsumo’ were the standouts and showed exactly what is to come from Silent Cry. It’s good. Very good.

Many old favourites were interspersed into the set, with ‘Just the Way I’m Feeling’, ‘Insomnia’ and ‘My Perfect Day’ receiving particular acclaim and consequently forcing the Thekla to rock to groan and creak on its murky waters. However, the two tracks that every Feeder fan wanted to hear were reserved for the encore • firstly the fabulous ‘High’ followed by the anthemic ‘Just a Day’, with the latter causing riotous scenes on the dancefloor, a fantastic way to end an excellent show.

On the evidence of this show, Feeder are back to their best after what can only be described as a ‘difficult’ period over the last few years. They never disappoint live and leave the crowd thirsty for more, certainly a good way of building anticipation for the new album. Objective achieved then • welcome back Feeder, you have been missed.