A healthy crowd gathered to witness Colleen Green and Cassie Ramone as their joint tour arrived at Brudenell Social Club in Leeds. Before the two headliners took to the stage the audience were treated to a warm up set from local act Nanna.
Nanna seemed to have a nervous energy to them, not really surprising for such a young band, and this added to their 70’s female punk band style. While coming across as a very raw act this seemed a conscious choice rather than inexperience as they displayed a style of music very reminiscent of bands like The Slits. Treading the line between punk and shoegaze the crowd rapidly warmed to them. They took punk in a new direction by adding intelligence to their angst ridden, protest, lyrics. This was in evidence the most during their final track which was a tirade against the tampon tax.
The crowd were now gaining enthusiasm and eagerly anticipating Cassie Ramone. In a what seemed like quite an odd move at the time Cassie asked the whole audience to sit on the floor the moment she arrived on stage. At the time it felt like this decision completely killed the atmosphere in the room, but as her set progressed it was obviously a move designed to fit with her style. Dimly lit, Cassie performed as if she was playing at a small party creating an intimate and unique feel. She rattled through the tracks barely pausing for applause, with an on stage demeanour, and attitude, that suggested she was so relaxed and cool that it bordered on indifference towards the audience. Her lyrics were quirky and her vocals were effortlessly flawless, but it was her guitar playing which really caught my attention. Her choice of electro-acoustic guitar allowed her to add effects which added extra depth to the beautiful and intricate guitar parts she creates. Her riffs were catchy with a very individual style, which surpassed her excellent vocals, Cassie Ramone reminded me of a much more down-beat Kimya Dawson.
It was then time for Colleen Green as the crowd rose their feet. Another incredibly cool individual, Colleen played her entire set from behind sunglasses. It was a very understated set as Green stood before the audience armed with a guitar and a backing track as she belted out her repertoire. Her vocals were impeccable throughout a set which she hammered through, only occasionally and very briefly stopping to sip water. Green thoroughly impressed with a performance which seemed effortless to her. The only criticism I could aim at her is that the majority of her back catalogue is at a similar level, and tempo, so as the set progressed it felt like quite samey and suffered from a lack of peaks and troughs. Despite the set feeling slightly in-transitory it still proved to be gripping viewing and the crowd seemed more than satisfied with expertise on display.