With their self-titled debut album coming out earlier this year, Eagulls descended on the Satellite in Silverlake, Calif., on Friday night and mesmerized with their raw post-punk material.
The Leeds-based band seemed subdued at first, but that didn’t last long with the first aggressive strums of the guitar from Mark “Goldy” Goldsworthy and Liam Matthews on the hard-charging “Tough Luck.”
From the start, it was impossible not to think of the late 1970s/early-‘80s versions of Bauhaus or Joy Division, with a mysterious feel to the music that matched perfectly with the hazy pink and purple lights that bathed the stage.
Frontman George Mitchell also immediately commanded attention with his engaging presence, boasting a yelp harkening back to Robert Smith and emotion that became more and more evident with each strained contortion of his wiry body.
Eagulls’ rhythm section—drummer Henry Ruddell and bassist Tom Kelly— really stood out with the third song of the evening, the album favorite “Nerve Endings.” Kelly began it with a rumbling bassline that Ruddell punched up with a thumping kick drum.
Songs like “Footsteps” and “Hollow Visions” didn’t offer any respite from the guttural assault, either, as each Eagulls number gushed with percussive blasts and fuzzed-out guitars.
Eagulls also pulled out a couple of older tracks from their brief catalog (they only formed in 2011, after all). “Coffin” and “Moulting” were included, with both coming off the quintet’s 2012 self-titled EP, while set-closer “Possessed” from a 2011 split EP ended the proceedings with an injection of angst-y energy.
The Satellite wasn’t quite packed for Eagulls’ Los Angeles date, but it seemed that the guys kept their collective feet on the pedal throughout. It was gritty and it was sweaty, but it was also a punk show of beauty.