Gig Review

Max Raptor
Bath, Komedia
6th March 2012

Max Raptor            Hildamay 


Photo Of Hildamay © Copyright Neil OliverFrom the first song, front man Tim Lawrence was off the stage and amongst the crowd with his scratchy yet rough voice carrying well. With some good lights and a lot of energy from band members on and off stage, there was a lot to keep the crowed entertained throughout the show. They played through a bit of "We Loved, We Lost" including "By Your Side" and the title track, before playing a new song. Tim jumped back on stage for "The Light", before playing another new track introduced as "Miles Away". Hildamay's playing was pretty good, and well complemented by the strong light show in this medium sized venue. Whilst the energy on stage fit with the fairly small inactive crowd, Tim tried to push a little too much and spent most of the set jumping around Photo Of Hildamay © Copyright Neil Oliveramongst a static audience. The venue was much larger than the crowd inhabiting it, which meant any atmosphere was quickly dissipated. In a tightly packed venue playing to a familiar crowd I think Hildamay could put on a 5 star show. There performance brings to my mind any one of the many music video's popping up in the post-hardcore scene, with a band playing in a living room to a crowd of people stealing the mic, with the singer crowd surfing, and people jumping of amps and furniture. I feel that the band need to do a bit of work on their performance as a support act, as their inability to adapt to the small crowd, resulted in their clear ability to play well as a band being overlooked and quickly forgotten.

Photo Of Max Raptor © Copyright Neil OliverThe sound of Max Raptor was CD quality from the off, and didn't let up through "Call To Arms" or "Carolina" with the lights building up through the set. Once again the stage failed to contain the front man, as Wil Ray leapt from the stage. Whilst Wil was running amongst the crowd the stage fell absent of much movement, though this is not to say that things were entirely bland, as the rest bobbed along with guitarist Chris Gilbert, as he resting one foot on the amp whilst playing. There was a lot more professionalism from Max Raptor than Hildamay, both in terms of sound and performance, with a tight set and very little to fault them on musically. Once again the crowd was fairly quiet and unresponsive, and the band haven't quite reached the performance level required to spur on any crowd, in any venue, but they didn't feel as restricted as the support band did. Other than that, and the front man coming off as somewhat arrogant, it's hard to find fault. They played through a lot of the 2011 album Photo Of Max Raptor © Copyright Neil Oliver"Portraits" including "Beasts", "The Alarm" and ended on the fast paced and catchy "The King Is Dead" as the last track of the night. In a way, this is the least satisfied I've been leaving a venue all year. This wasn't because tonights bands were in anyway disappointing, but the humour, intimacy, and raw emotion we have seen from the likes of "Brand New", "The Xcerts", "Crazy Arm", "Hyro Da Hero" and "Austin Lucas" has been simply incredible, and some of the most memorable gig's of my life. Max Raptor played well, and would make an excellent support act for larger bands, but as a headlining act i would have loved to see them in a slightly smaller venue, where they could bounce off the walls a bit more, in front of a larger, more active crowd of fans that i feel they deserve.

Hildamay 3/5
Max Raptor 4/5

Review By Marc Rich
Photos By Neil Oliver

 Max Raptor

Wil Ray
Chris Gilbert
Matt Stevenson
Pete Reisner


Tim Lawrence
Ollie James Jeffs
Chris Carvell
Sean Keane
Tom Spencer

 Band Related Links
Max Raptor Facebook
Hildamay Facebook
 Review Score Code
- Top Cheese
- Brilliant
- Pretty damn good
- Ok I guess
- What Was That?