A part of me was excited to see Bipolar Sunshine perform at his homecoming show but I was also partly hesitant. Manchester Academy 2 is a surprisingly big venue for a band that haven’t released an album. The crowd they attracted was 25 or above and at times I felt like the youngest there. I grabbed a pint, headed for an empty corner and watched in gloom whilst the first 4 records were completely unrecognisable. Call me an idiot for going to a gig knowing only two of their records but firstly: who would turn down a free show and secondly, a good band should have the capability to ‘wow’ a crowd with a diffusing verve, enthusiasm and raw sonic ‘oomph’.
It becomes obvious that a band is clutching at straws with regards to a back catalogue when they turn to playing BBC Radio 1 Live Lounge covers. At times, especially during ‘Drowning Butterflies’ they had the crowd at their complete disposal but their lack of diversity meant that the elation was short-lived as they delved into another EP B-Side that no-one had clearly heard of.
‘Rivers’ provided the highlight of the night – it was their ‘Mr. Brightside’ (Cheers Matt), but again it was sandwiched between two depressingly emotive numbers. There’s hope ahead of their debut album though as ‘Where Did The Love Go’ saw a good old audience sing-song. By that time, though, the set was coming to an end – yes, it was only an hour long. We definitely didn’t get our money’s worth.
To add the the misery, front man Adio Marchant was a tad too cocky for my liking. I completely understand that the lead singer of any band needs some charisma, some authenticity, but this time, he portrayed a feeble Katie Hopkins rather than the tenderness of say, a Matt Bellamy.