Eureka Machines hit the road for a rare series of gigs around the UK 10/10
Words and photographs by Rebecca Bush
Stepping into the Borderline for the first time since it’s re-vamp in 2017 it’s good to discover that it still has that same underground vibe.
Looking around there’s a decent crowd gathering for tonight’s show which is the final night of Eureka Machines‘ 5 date UK tour and only dates scheduled this year.
Joining them tonight and for the third time this cycle is Huddersfield based four piece The Scaramanga Six. Minus one member tonight, bassist Steven Morricone, who was there in ‘miniature form’ (analogue bass machine with a photo attached!) Having had several line up changes over their nearly 20 year career (including a stint by Eureka Machine’s own Chris Catalyst) this will not detract from their performance.
Clearly having worked together for such a long time gives them a great chemistry , it all feels effortless and flows really well. They look every bit the rock and roll group, Julia on guitar and backing vocals with her flaming red hair, vocalist Paul in his relaxed shirt and jeans combo and sitting behind them drummer Gareth Champion looking suave in a shirt and tie!
Opening with track Owned a really atmospheric beginning bursting into a more punchy second half and setting the punky tone nicely. These guys gel really well , being entirely self managed and self released makes them a really tight group. Julia has a real intensity to her, focused on her beautiful guitar and really in the zone occasionally turning to Gareth to play off each other, and Pete’s vocals are a cocktail of crooner and punk rockabilly vibes.
Half of tonight’s set comes from their most recent album release, Chronica, a mammoth double album and wonderful body of work and the remainder of the set is a buffet of tracks from their extensive back catalogue. It’s a solid performance and really gets the room rocking and rolling.
The Scaramanga Six Set List
- Dirty Subaru
- Seven Chances
- Man or Marionette
- This is Chronica
- The Repo Man
- Fight or Flight
- Walking through Houses
A quick shuffle round and on to tonight’s main event Eureka Machines!
This sharp dressed four piece are bursting with character and charisma , connecting with the audience right from the get go with each band member entering the stage to enthusiastic chants of their names reacting with smiles and nods of approval and starting off on a total high. Singer Chris Catalyst encouraging the crowd to chant louder – his mum’s in tonight! Basking in the crowd’s enthusiasm for a few moments before bursting into first song Champion the Underdog from the 2011 release of the same title. A real stonking track, high energy with a ridiculously catchy hook and stomping beat – which seems set to be very much the theme of their set. Having an amazing body of work to cherry pick tracks from they bring a real eclectic set list. Staying with Champion the Underdog for second track ‘These are the people who live in my house‘ keeping the momentum and the energy high all four members are fully animated and exciting to watch , if anyone in the room needed their spirits lifted I can guarantee that they are well and truly flying by now!
They all sound immense, really in sync and sharp. Vocally Chris is knocking it out of the park whilst playing guitar and bouncing round the stage, Dave’s high energy and power stances fun to watch, Pete boogying away on bass with his and Dave’s backing vocals on point! And lest we forget – Drummer Wayne Sowden who is just pure unadulterated power!
There’s a real sense of brotherhood about the band , they bounce off each other and also individually all have a great aura. Chris is fully engaged with the audience expressing his gratitude several times throughout the evening , there is a lot of love in the room and a lot of banter – some poor unsuspecting audience member loses their pint – Chris spots it in front of him on the stage – ”You know what happens when you put your pint on stage?” he says , picking up said pint – ”Wayne drinks it!” and he takes it to the drummer pouring it down his throat! He chugs pretty much the whole thing much to everyone’s delight and the remaining drops are handed back to the owner!
Taking time to thank members of the crowd who have attended several shows and also those who have travelled from all over the world, fans from Texas , Hamburg, Helsinki, Madrid and even Tokyo and Osaka.
Dedicating track ‘Wish you were her‘ to the Japanese fans who had followed them on their whole stint to riotous cheers of approval. That wasn’t the only dedication of the evening though – Chris makes a dedication to Freddie Mercury and takes this opportunity to have his stars in your eyes moment ”tonight Matthew I’m going to be FREDDIE MERCURY” for track ‘(I’m) Wasting My Time (Yet Again)‘ adopting the Freddy stance.
Somehow this band just keep building momentum throughout their set, and it is hot in here tonight.
Last song before the encore ‘Scream Eureka’ gets the room jumping and the band leave the stage. There’s a momentary lull as Chris returns solo for first encore ‘We’re Going To The Future‘ another from 2015’s Brainwaves, taking the song alone with the whole crowd singing along the band re join him for the final chorus and the whole room is moving and singing and hands are in the air. Rounding the set off with two more encores, ‘Pop Star‘, from 2013 release Remain in Hope, a personal favourite and definite highlight of the evening, and Zero Hero another from Champion The Underdog a perfect final song to really blast the roof off this gig! These guys are pulling out all the stops, killing it tonight and its wonderful to watch a band with so much positive energy emitting from them – a real life affirming moment, music is magic and these guys are wizards. Everyone left with a big smile on their face and a warm glow in their heart. If you get the chance to see these guys live DO IT!
Eureka Machines Set List
- Champion The Underdog
- These Are The People Who Live In My House
- Hey Ho John Doe
- Being Good Is Okay , But Being Better’s Better
- The Story Of My Life
- Born Ready
- Wish You Were Her
- (I’m) Wasting My Time (Yet Again)
- My Rock And Roll
- Scream Eureka
- We’re Going To The Future
- Pop Star
- Zero Hero
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