It’s appropriate that one of Catfish and the Bottlemen‘s most popular songs is entitled “Homesick.” The North Wales boys are rarely home, spending most of their time on the road making fast friends with a flurry of penetrating-to-the-bone rock music, willing to play anywhere and talk to anyone, and continuously showcasing their talent along with a deep appreciation for all their adoring fans.
This evening at Latitude 30, home to the annual British Music Embassy showcase, Catfish was in top form, as always, with frontman Van McCann dressed in wide smiles and striped shirt. It’s hard to nail down the ‘hits’ from their album, The Balcony, released last year, since each one is a jewel on it’s own, from the anthemic “Cacoon” and the jangle-filled “Kathleen,” to the jumpin’ jack dance of “26” or the thunderstorm themed “Tyrants.”
As predicted in my review of their Larimer show in Denver earlier this month, they have indeed taken SXSW by storm, and will continue to do so. It’s just a matter of staying on the road, continuing to do what they do, which is capture the hearts of rock-loving souls and make friends from city to city. Catfish and the Bottlemen may seem a bit wet behind the ears, but don’t let the bright-eyed enthusiam fool you. McCann, Johnny Bond, Benji Blakeway, and Bob Hall are rock veterans who’ve spent eight-plus years perfecting their craft, and have many, many more years of music-making ahead of them. Can’t wait to see what they’ll be up to next.