So, let me explain about Chunk, first of all. It’s more a collection of rehearsal and storage spaces for musicians than a venue. The building is crumbling, has irregular stone steps placed at random and its only décor is whitewashed brick. Chunk is on Meanwood Road on its way out of Leeds into an area renowned for its arty but skint inhabitants, the type of place where they’ve rescued a very beautiful Baptist Church by turning it into a yoga centre. Chunk is a co-operative. And this is my first BYOB (booze not baby) gig. Marvellous.
For Passion Pusher this is the final night in a twelve date tour before an overnight drive back up the motorway to Scotland. In such a relaxed venue, the band can be honest about their fatigue, giving in to it by leaving out some of the more twiddly bits.
Very much DIY in sound, Passion Pusher are a simple three-piece who play old-fashioned jangly music with charm. Jimmy Passion is a big teddy bear of a man, at times yowling like he has stepped on something prickly. He doesn’t always need the microphone. Songs such as ‘Reconsidering Value’ and ‘Simplicity’ show that they have plenty of melodies. ‘Shrek Song’ has a faux naivety reminiscent of bands like The Pooh Sticks or Bis. And with his guitar held high, Jimmy Passion is at odds with his age like a non-goth Robert Smith.
Most of the songs tonight come from the album Aquarium. They finish with ‘My Guy’. The drummer, Eilidh (also of Breakfast Muff), joins on vocals and it’s a bit like The Pastels. They are at their best when they stick to this style of ‘jelly and blancmange pop’. Like eight year olds after a birthday, simultaneously high on coloured sprinkles and exhausted by the excitement, they end in style.
After this, it’s time to wake up the driver with a thermos of coffee and a Mars bar. Next stop Glasgow.