Sly Antics Review: The Wardrobe, 22/04/17.


A bustling Saturday night in Leeds sees Manchester three-piece Sly Antics descend upon The Wardrobe in Leeds, bringing their unique eclectic sound with them. Forming just last year, their debut EP Captive City received high critical acclaim and led them to playing high profile venues such as Manchester’s O2 Ritz and Liverpool’s Cavern to name but a few. The buzz around them is clearly maintaining, as a cluster of young fans bustle towards the barrier as they take to the stage.
They open their set with a blistering instrumental piece which builds beautifully throughout. A ringing guitar from lead vocalist/guitarist Sam Hudson echoes throughout the room and perfectly builds the atmosphere. It’s clear from the start that this band have an air of professionalism about them, playing every note whilst barely having to look at each other for any changes. They quickly launch into Captive City, boasting an impressive vocal delivery laced amongst thundering drums and guitar riffs. The crowd reciprocate their enthusiasm with little hint from the band to get involved; a sign that they are really onto a winner.
Sly Antics then burst into a quick, but no less impressive, short cover of N**gas in Paris, of Jay Z and Kanye West fame. The rehash is creative and ambitious, and goes down a treat with the geared-up crowd. Their catchy pop track Lights Go Down is a funk-infused dream, with infectious choruses to boot, causing the crowd to launch into a mass sing along towards the end which doesn’t require much direction from Hudson.
It’s refreshing to see a relatively low-key band command such appreciation and respect from a crowd, but it’s clear to see why. Each member plays like their life depends on it, throwing themselves into the performance as if they’re headlining a stadium.
“This one’s really funky so everyone needs to get dancing,” grins Hudson, before the three-piece launch into Choose Your Words, and funky it certainly is. It’s creatively written, and tightly played with every note in its right place. The audience gleefully sway along to the captivating beat.
Described as their “newest track” by Hudson, Sunday Fear is an equally as strong song as the rest. You could hear this song on day time radio and it wouldn’t sound at all out of place. Drummer Lee Hudson, cousin of vocalist Sam, sings some lovely harmony lines in the middle eight section which are a wonderful addition to their already polished sound, rounded off wonderfully with the bass riffs of Chris Allen.
They close the night with new single Motion, which is due for release on the 19th May 2017. The guitar tone in the intro is fantastic, and the incredibly memorable track builds momentum up to an abrupt stop, where it seems like the end. Just as the exhilarated crowd are about to erupt into applause, the band launch into a thundering outro which sets your heart pounding right through the build up to a blistering finish.
Hudson nonchalantly smiles, and with a quick “cheers”, they’re off stage, clearly slightly unaware of the impact their set just had. Sly Antics have big things in store for them, as tonight has proven, and they are definitely a name to look out for on this summer’s gig listings.
Sly Antics are currently touring the UK, and they play Manchester’s Deaf Institute for their Motion single launch party on 20th May. Get tickets here!

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