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Fight Like Apes, Ed Zealous, Le Galaxie
It's a quieter turnout than you'd expect for a line up like this, thanks to "Snowpocalypse 2: Electric Boogaloo", but it doesn't dampen the spirits of anyone who manages to get to the Spring & Airbrake in the slightest. It was always going to be a party night, and that's exactly what we get.

After kicking off with Dubliners, Le Galaxie, Ed Zealous emerge to keep the party going. These veterans of the local scene tear it up with their indie rock shenanigans. They've come a fair way since their early days; whilst they were always confident, cocky wee lads, there's now a certain sense of assuredness about their tunes that makes them sound a little bit more polished and sharp.

And then, Fight Like Apes. They're renowned for being a party band, with an amazingly fun, energetic atmosphere at their gigs, but they took that reputation to a whole new level: couples of all varieties waltzing to 'I'm Beginning To Think You Prefer Beverly Hills 90210...', a 2 litre bottle of milk being passed around the crowd and band, randoms from the crowd winding up on stage, a gift of apple and butter for one particularly dedicated fan, everyone singing Happy Birthday to MayKay, massive steel poles being used as percussive instruments´┐Żthe list of bizarre but hugely entertaining events goes on and on.

MayKay is - as always - the star of the show. An amazing, compelling and engaging front woman, her energy is almost boundless. Almost, but not quite - she lets us know that she's knackered herself on the first two songs, and requests the help of a punter down the front on 'Lend Me Your Face'. She seems properly touched and shocked when everyone belts out the entire first verse of 'Jake Summers' for her - almost a stadium moment - amidst the very sweaty mess in front of her.

Although it's the tracks from the first album that has everyone singing along to every single word, the new album is clearly packed full of equally crowd-pleasing Ape classics in the making. Despite the album not being officially launched in the UK until spring next year, it's clear that everyone present already has their copy well worn out.

But, the stand out moment from the night is most definitely their cover of the Salt 'n' Pepa classic, 'Push It' (in lieu of their standard Mclusky cover). With two groupies up dancing on stage, the FLApes genuinely tear it apart with an incredible version that pretty much wrecked everyone there, given how completely mental the crowd were going for it. Jaw-droppingly awesome, amazing fun, in every possible way.

Orla Graham

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Gig Details
Venue: Spring & Airbrake
Location: Belfast
Date: 19/12/2010

Related Links
+ Fight Like Apes
+ Ed Zealous
+ Le Galaxie