Mara Falls offer two recorded tracks for free on their website in true Noughties, indie band fashion. Much like many greats before them though, the Coventry three-piece come alive in the night-time with their electric, accomplished handful of musical offerings and discernable tenacity. Most recently, the trio shone at Coventry venue The Arches, where despite being the first support band, they were the jewel in the evening's crown.
The rest of the night – a homecoming for pop punk staple food Everything Aside (formerly The Prophets) – was a rocker's dream, featuring other local talent Pretty Vile and Operation Guillotine. Despite the feast of eccentric and differing tidbits, it was Mara Falls that emanated such quality and eliminated awkward Support Band Syndrome. The initially reserved crowd were left visibly impressed by Mara Falls' prowess and obvious musicianship.
Top singles Getaway and One for the Road, with festival-worthy choruses and monopolising beats, emanated a sexuality that can only be backed up by the members' visual aesthetic. Porcelain doll Lola Rose hardly moved an inch while delivering her coarsing bass, so involved with the music, while drummer Peter Szots and frontman Peter Black flailed and thrashed around their platform more with each record. The surprising electronic element to Mara Falls' sound interacts with the melodious guitars, demanding percussion and raspy, distinctive vocal.
Despite their appearance and emphatic nonchalance that aids every stellar rock band, Mara Falls are seamlessly humble and welcoming. Black swooned more than once: “Come and have a beer and a talk and shit, and grab yourself a free T-shirt“, discarding the notion that pretence comes hand in hand with impressive musicianship. Despite their spates in London and Paris, they wasted no time in proudly informing their audience of their Coventry heritage. We were not to worry, though, as the rock ‘n' roll mask only slipped for a second before Mara Falls ripped into another unyielding, currently unknown anthem.
Their rough and ready set ensued an edge that is often lost with stadium-sized bands. Being about four feet away from the collection of amps and speakers really peppers an evening with clarity and rawness that is difficult to come by. The crowd was transported back to a better time, when music lovers had an insatiable appetite for driving basslines, a rip-roaring chorus and an abundance of attitude. This indie rock band were a refreshing refuge in an otherwise pop punk sea.
This is not amateur hour for Mara Falls, though. Their advocates include BBC Introducing and Touch FM, and with a host of new material being recorded as we speak, it will not be long before this troika reach the heights they evidently aspire to. The other performing bands may have had unrivalled support, a larger catalogue of music or a more out-there interpretation of their craft, but Mara Falls were the obsidian in the rough. Watch out, world.
Words by Samantha Ewen