Live review: Radkey, Turbogeist at Tut’s, 28/2/14

Radkey_King Tuts_John Graham_Bassline Images_ 15Radkey are three teenage brothers from Missouri, Dee Radke on guitar and vocals, Isaiah Radke on bass and hilarious stage patter and Solomon Radke on drums.

Six months on from a rapturously received support slot for equally youthful Castleford rockers Drenge, they’re back headlining Tut’s in their own right.

It’s not quite a sell out but there are still enough enthusiastic fans to create an impressive mosh pit down the front.

Support act Turbogeist don’t have much in the way of a unified look but they make up for it in swagger.

Their dual frontmen swap mics, trade scrappy solos and deliver a short set of tunes reminiscent of The Clash’s debut album.

Only one of them can sing and only the other can really play guitar, making them something of a cut-price Libertines but the audience whoop and holler and for an unknown band they have a remarkable presence onstage.

Debut single ‘Alien Girl’ is given a rough makeover that renders it closer to Black Flag than The Offspring, marking Turbogeist as definitely ones to watch out for

Punk has always been more about an ethos than a unified sound and though the three brothers are not quite musical revolutionaries, they put an entertaining spin on some well-worn tropes.

Radkey’s version of punk is fast and metallic, with Dee’s deep, gothic vocals reminiscent of The Misfits.

On ‘Red Letter’ they flit between The Stooges’ shambling proto-punk and Dead Kennedys’ reckless sloganeering.

Radkey_King Tuts_John Graham_Bassline Images_ 4

After last year’s fantastic Cat & Mouse EP and a series of excellent singles, their debut long-player cannot be far off and this evening’s set suggests that they have no shortage of promising candidates for inclusion.

Tonight, an audience of all ages goes wild, as much for Isaiah’s hilarious stage banter as for the trio’s frantic tunes.

That’s not to say the tunes aren’t top notch: bands three times their age would be proud to own ‘Feed My Brain’s zombie stomp or the equally excellent ‘Romance Dawn’, but the insouciance of youth and the general good natured vibes give the group an extra boost.

Their standout single ‘Start Freaking Out’ closes the show; its titular refrain an irresistible call to unleash chaos, and Tut’s duly delivers, dragging dozens of previous onlookers into the fray.

They’re catchy and funny, sometimes puerile but always likeable and right now Radkey might just be one of the best young bands around.

More photos

Words: Max Sefton
Photos: John Graham

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