Fans have always been of the utmost importance to Wakefield trio The Cribs. The band rarely stop touring, fill up their days with interviews and try to break down as many barriers as they can, all to satisfy the thirst of their fans. In previous years the Jarmans have celebrated ‘Cribsmas’ by having a residency and infamous Leeds venue Brudenell Social Club. This year Cribsmas has spread to four UK cities, including a 3 night residency at London’s ULU, where I was lucky enough to catch them.
Cribsmas is more than about playing in an intimate venue for hardcore fans. Cribsmas is a chance for the band to repay the dedication of their followers by playing a 22 song set featuring tracks from their extensive back catalogue. This is demonstrated from the very start when they start with the first track from their self-titled debut album, ‘Watch Trick’ which is followed immediately by ‘Different Angle’ from their sixth studio and sets off an energetic crowd that would barely stop moving throughout the set. ‘Rainbow Ridge’ is the only offering off most recent album ’24/7 Rockstar Shit’ and is closely followed by fan favourite ‘Don’t You Wanna Be Relevant’. Rare B-Side ‘Feelin’ It!’ provides a small moment of calm as does ‘To Jackson’ a few songs later.
Tonight, The Cribs are more energetic than I’ve seen them before. Merely 3 songs into the set Ryan through his microphone away and more than once Ross’s drum kit falls over due to his exuberant drumming style. At one point Ryan asks for a request and stick his microphone into the audience, one lucky person grabs it and asks for ‘Baby Don’t Sweat’ and the band obliged. Of course more popular tracks such as ‘Be Safe’, ‘Men’s Needs’ and ‘Hey Scenesters!’ provoke the most furious reactions with the biggest pits and most crowdsurfers but the rest of the set is equally loved. Now established set closer ‘Pink Snow’ really topped off a night which showed that The Cribs have an incredibly consistent back catalogue and even their more recent efforts still talk greatly to the youth of today.
Words by Alex Whitmore