Two gigs were on in the Union building on Friday night; in Academy 3 was Academy Unsigned, a night the hosts of Academy 2 had played only this time two years ago. In that time [and a little more] the Whisky Cats have performed at more than 200 gigs and have released three CDs on their own label Medical Records. The latest of which is entitled Put Your Title Here EP, the superb follow up to Image n All The People EP which was released to a sell out audience in Academy 3 last summer.
To a larger audience the Whisky Cats delivered a more emphatic, well honed sound. Wasting no time, the quintet launched into favourites from their debut EP, much to the excitement of the mixed crowd of students and Mancunian fans. This performance was not just a replay of their back catalogue but a unique live show which saw Sam Draper on percussion break down songs into a rapturous drum solo and Felix Hughes on sax depart from conventional melody to deliver horns not far removed from Ian Dury and The Blockheads.
Ultimately this self proclaimed ‘motley crew of easy listening’ were out to entertain and impress, and that they certainly did. Aside from their involvement in the Sony Vaio Nation project, it is a wonder why no record company has had the guts to step away from the dominant tide of skinny jeans to sign these talented young gentlemen. Nonetheless they persevere with a pre-order funded album due later this year, a first for the industry, and certainly a must listen for any student who wishes to claim they have studied at Manchester.