Say Psych: Live Review: Thus Love @ YES Pink Room, Manchester 25.08.2023

Thus Love hail from Brattleboro, Vermont, an unlikely setting for the rise of a blistering trio who are setting the scene alight. The self-proclaimed queer post punk act have been selling out venues across Europe and tonight they have packed the pink room to capacity, and at the start of Manchester’s infamous Pride Weekender, they couldn’t have timed it better.

Their set is comprised mostly from the critically acclaimed debut LP Memorial, opening with ‘Repetitioner’ which sets the scene for all that is to follow, with its haunting guitar riff and crooning vocals which give the feel of a band much older than they are. They quickly fire through the brilliant ‘In Tandem’ and ‘Inamorato’ which make for a heady trio that leaves the room reeling. ‘Anathema’ and ‘Family Man’ also make for a punchy combination, with the latter offering up a beat so infectious you are humming it for days. They treat us to a new song, which is brilliant, of course, before moving back to Memorial and giving us the title track itself, ‘Friend’ and ‘Pith and Point’. All are delivered flawlessly and the crowd lap them up with abundance. Recent single ‘Centrefield’ is a slower track, but that just makes it all the more intense live and ‘Put On Dog’ brings things to a bouncing close.

There is a feeling of magic in the air watching Thus Love, and the knowledge that they can only get better from here on out, they are a must see for anyone with a taste for the darker side of punk. Think Echo and the Bunnymen, meets Bauhaus, meets Sisters of Mercy, and somehow even that heady mixture doesn’t do them justice.

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