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PINS in The Workman’s Club on December 6th 2013

Manchester post-punkers PINS popped down to The Workman’s on Friday to showcase the catchy and brooding tunes that feature on their debut album ‘Girls Like Us.’ Dublin quartet The #1s support and deliver to us their energetic indie rock/power-pop tracks with much gusto. Their ragged and loose playing style brings to mind bands like The Cribs or The Undertones and their hook heavy tunes demand a foot-tapping or a head-bopping response. Tell Me Why stands out as a highlight with its catchy melody, deliberate chord change in the chorus, and honest lyrics that make our hearts melt.

The pounding drums of Lost Lost Lost usher in the start of PINS set and quickly establish a template for the night. A slow bassline accompanies the dull thud of the bass drum while Holgate screams shrilly into the mic. It’s a formula that seems to generate a whole lot of vibrant energy, but rather than releasing it into their performance, the band merely bottles it up on stage. So while the first few tracks are decent songs, it is somewhat frustrating to witness a band who appear to be holding something back.

The band do manage to shake off these early inhibitions, and unleash a torrent of raw power on the audience. Get With Me sees the drums pick up the pace, and the vocals are aggressive and in-your-face.  Their Christmas track Kiss Me Quickly (it’s Christmas) is much more than a novelty song, and the gentle guitar work shows a tenderer side to the band that you would never suspect even existed. For all the ferocity and bluster PINS try to portray throughout the show, it is actually this delicate moment that stands out from the rest.

Girls Like Us again showcases an anger that was absent at the start of the show. Again Holgate excels in the vocal department and in the whole frontwoman area, while the guitars and drums come together nicely to deliver a punky tune we can all shake our fists with. PINS may have been a bit hit and miss, but they went out on a satisfying high.

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Photos: James Murray