(An edited version of this review originally appeared in the Nottingham Evening Post.)
The last time that Computerman played Nottingham, their audience numbered just twelve. This time, despite an early start, they drew a healthy crowd of supporters, who were clearly not just there for the headliners.
Which is just as it should be, as the five-piece band was based in Nottingham, before moving to London and landing a record deal. Their current single, No More Broken Hearts, is a good representation of their live sound: fast, furious, and dramatic.
Vocals are shared between bassist Adam Pickering – a natural rock star, with a touch of the Tim Burgess about him (bet he hates that comparison) – and bespectacled guitarist Mark Sykes, whose voice was reminiscent of James Dean Bradfield from the Manics. The two singers had an endearing habit of mouthing each other’s words when they weren’t singing, as if they couldn’t wait to join in.
Computerman are back in Nottingham on February 17, playing Trent University. They deserve a bigger crowd still.
Following such a well-received support set, The Fallout Trust battled to keep the audience on-side. As time went on, the chatter at the back of the room threatened to drown them out entirely.
This was a shame, as they are accomplished musicians with a lot to offer. Singer Joe Winter gave an intense, committed performance, jerking around like a man possessed. The music was at its most interesting when it steered away from generic NME-approved rock, towards a more melodic, structured sound.
The potential is there; all they need now is the right audience.