Before we had even set off for the North East Lincolnshire coast it was warm. Very warm. We arrived in a vibrant Cleethorpes a few hours later. It's good to see the place still dragging folk in during the summer. I have a lot of ties with this part of the world. The Spiders Web is a drinking house about a mile or so inland of the seafront in Old Clee and is just your average local pub except for the back room which doubles up as a venue for the odd wedding and also a curious but effective environment for a live gig. But not just any old live gig. This is the home of Orphan Boy.

As we entered we were greeted with hardly anybody. The room was nearly empty apart from a few chaps lapping up the selections made by the DJ (who has a part to play later) and sporting some wonderfully real Samual T. Herring moves involving chests and clenched fists. But the one thing that struck us was that if we thought it was warm outside it was at least ten degrees warmer in, so we made for the bar and after spotting him through the Spiders' gloom, chatted to Rob Cross, lead singer with the band, who was in good spirits and told us the band were doing a few gigs this year to see how they go. It was hard to hear to be honest because the DJ for the night, Guy Kimble, was working feverishly on the decks and was getting louder and louder but playing some sweet sounds I have to say. By about ten o'clock it was as if the old proverbial bus had pulled up outside as scores of people streamed in through the doors and within ten more minutes it was packed. DJ Kimble was working the crowd into a frenzy and they retaliated with chants of "Weird town, weird town!2 and at last around 10:15 p.m. Orphan Boy swaggered on to the stage.

With no further ado they stormed into 'Letter for Annie' and then into 'Transpennine'. The crowd were by now going bonkers. The two guys who were doing the best Future Island's impressions I've ever seen were now at the front and bouncing around like a pair of teenagers. 'Popsong' was followed by an announcement that they were going to play some of their trademark 'Council pop', DJ Kimble beckoned the revellers to come forward, which they did happily, and Orphan Boy drifted into 'Middle Class Roots'.

Indie anthem after indie anthem ensued and I was wearing a big cheesy smile as I stood precariously on a bench at the far corner taking photos. I put my hand on the well-painted wall to steady myself and slipped slightly due to the oceans of sweat running down the inside of the room. The crowd were jumping and it was proper mayhem in front of the stage. 'Harbour Lights,' 'Anderson Shelter Blues' and 'Thirtysomething Lovesick Ballad' followed and Rob, who was wearing a sweater on one of the warmest nights of the year, was dripping. A couple more tracks came at us before the anthemic 'Bury Your Stars' filled the room and the crowd responded likewise with jumping and hollering and singing. Somewhere in the mix Kimble shouted out into the crowd that they had their very own band here in Cleethorpes and again the crowd responded chanting "weird town" over and over again as Orphan Boy blitzed into yet another anthem with 'Some Frontier'. I've not seen anything like this energy wise for a long, long time and as the band resumed after a short break for an encore they were going just utter bonkers.

'Black and White for You' and 'Satellites' finished the set and as I got down from my perch I slipped on the wall again, handily landing on the chap at the side of me who laughed and started chanting "Weird town", which was all I heard as I made for a sharp exit to begin our long trek home.

Ten out of ten for Orphan Boy. Phenomenal stuff that surely will result in writing again and coming up with a new album.....please? Ten out of ten for The Spiders Web. It's nothing special but it is special. Ten out of ten for the crowd, just bonkers and out for a laugh. And ten out of ten to Grimsby, even if, and the locals are right you know, it is a "Weird town" indeed!

Photos by Dave Goodwin

Related Links:

Commenting On: Spiders Web, Grimsby, 23/7/2016 - Orphan Boy

ie London, England

tick box before submitting comment

First Previous Next Last