After an unusually quiet year for the Jarmans, it was only fitting that they came out of hibernation with a bang. Renowned for their DIY homecoming shows, The Cribs have always been more than just a band for their Wakefield and Leeds faithful, they’ve created a cult following through their lust for live performances. As we’re used to experiencing sweat-driven club shows, filling a 10,000 strong Millennium Square was always going to be an interesting outcome. However, this ‘local lads done good’ fairy-tale lived up to all expectations, as a euphoric crowd roared every single word of every single song throughout their 90-minute set.
Wakefield chants resonate around the compact courtyard hours before the band were due on stage. People are showering themselves in lager and making friends with complete strangers, purely through the love and passion of their beloved trio. Anticipation hits as crowds surge forward to get within touching distance of the Jarman twins, who walk onstage at 9:15 with brother Ross to embark on their 24 song set.
As their trademark Karate Kid track rings out, Gary thrashes out the opening chords to “Ancient History”, and all is chaos. The crowd feed off of the organic, honest music from the word go – strangers turn into best friends within one line of a song, arms around each other, screaming to the sky at the top of their lungs. The group whizz through their 6 album discography, “Men’s Needs”, “I’m a Realist”, and “Another Number” have the guitars melodies drowned out by the chanting of the crowd, as “We Were Aborted” and “Come On, Be a No-One” result in even more boorish Yorkshire dancing.
“It’s all a bit of a childhood dream” says bassist Gary, who screams out “Mirror Kisses” and “Hey Scenesters!” at the top of his lungs. Ross’s solid drumming glues the thrashing riot-girl infused guitars together, as the boys sound at the top of their game. After toning things down with a heartfelt rendition of “Shoot The Poets” to ending with the experimental story-telling “Pink Snow”, the brothers took Leeds through a journey of 12+ years of music in an intoxicating fashion.
With infectious pop-hooks and downright lovability, The Cribs have stayed strong through the decline of many mid-noughties indie bands, and at Leeds Millennium Square, they showed exactly why they made it. Putting every ounce of energy into the music, they’ve stayed true to their roots since recording “The Cribs” back in 2004. Their rough and ready approach shines through with their honesty, as the band take to Twitter after the show: “We have played 833 shows in total. Last night was number 1.” I’m sure for a lot of fans, they would whole-heartedly agree.