FEEDER are a Welsh rock band formed in Newport, Wales. They have released nine studio albums, three compilations, two EPs, and 34 singles to date. They have spent a total of 181 weeks on the singles and albums charts combined with their own releases as of 2016, and have accumulated 25 top 75 singles between 1997 and 2012
To spread the word about their latest long player 'All Bright Electric' they embarked on a nationwide tour, we caught up with them at the final date of the tour at the famous 'Lemongrove' venue within the grounds of Exeter university. I met a guy stood on the steps a couple of hours before the doors opened and he explained that he had seen the band in Bristol and liked them so much, he decided to come again, I asked him if he'd be up for doing a write up of the evening, he agreed so from this moment on, the words are from Adam Wareham from Gillingham in Dorset, take it away Adam....
I arrived outside The LemonGrove at about 1:00pm to start the queue, expecting people to arrive from 3:00pm onwards like they did in Bristol. This didn't happen and much to my amusement people arrived much closer to 6;00pm, it didn't worry me as I'm usually at gigs MUCH earlier than that! It was around 5:30pm when I could hear Feeder soundcheck, the music thumping against the walls. Hearing some of my favourite FEEDER tunes such as 'Feeling A Moment' & 'Pushing The Senses' before the show got me physically excited for the evenings proceedings. They only played half the songs but it was enough! Finally, when the doors opened, I quickly entered making sure I picked my spot right on the barrier. As with every other gig I go to I wouldn't move for the life of me.
Local legends Reigning Days were first up and didn't take long to settle into their stride, kicking up a great blend of rock with some impressive guitar, tight thunderous bass and metronomic drum playing. It was apparent that this was a homecoming show for them and they took time in-between songs to thank their friends and family for coming to support them. There was a great moment where the bass player explained that his partner was in the audience and it was the first time that she has had a drink since recently giving birth to their boy, I bet it didn't take many! It was especially good to see that most of the crowd got there early and stayed, fixed to the spot for the entire. I myself have found many new favourite bands from openers. Favourites from the set for me included 'Empire', 'Friendly Fire' and the closer 'Renegade' which had the room bouncing along nicely.
After what seemed to be a very long wait, David Bowie's 'Major Tom' shattered the small talk announcing FEEDER's imminent arrival to the stage. They did the same at the recent Bristol show but I don't think most of the audience realised! I was stood next to another super fan called Steve Price who was also present at the Bristol show and we were super excited about the show tonight.
When Feeder strode onstage, the place erupted with Grant welcoming the crowd. They started the show with a slower track lifted from the latest LP 'Another Day On Earth', the same as they did in Bristol. Next up was 'Renegades', the only song from the 2010 album of the same name, this got the crowd and myself jumping and singing along to the lyrics. 'Feeling A Moment' and 'Pushing the Senses' were next and these two marked my favourite part of the show. The first album I bought by FEEDER was Pushing the Senses and seeing these songs played live was literally a dream come true. I used to watch the live video for Pushing the Senses wondering what it was like to be in a crowd for a FEEDER show and right now marked that moment! During 'Pushing the Senses' I could feel the surge of the crowd against me for the first time as people got excited and were letting their hair down on the last night of the tour.
The band took you on a roller coaster ride which consisted of songs old and new including 'Lost And Found', 'High', 'Eskimo' (latest single) and rocked a new track called 'Paperweight' and a nice slow burner titled 'Tender'.
Next up was the big hitters 'Come Back Around' and 'Insomnia', from the opening chords, the mosh pit fired up, taking me by surprise, the crowd going mental throughout these tracks whilst I was hanging onto the barrier for dear life, taking the hits from all angles whilst singing along to every word! During 'Insomnia', Grant asked the crowd to jump around which they did happily, however, with him jumping, it caused his guitar strap to break for the second show in a row during exactly the same song. He looked round to his engineer, gave him a wry a smile and fixed the guitar on his own, deciding to take a break from jumping along with the crowd. 'Borders' is the opening single to their previous album 'Generation Freaks' which got a good reception from the crowd with many singing along.
After 'Borders', Grant told the crowd they were going to play a song from their first album 'Swim', to which many voices in the crowd called for 'Tangerine', clearly a firm fan favourite as the same happened in Bristol, something which Grant joked about on stage as "that song always gets called and we'll bring it back on the next tour", whether that was just a joke remains to be seen... Talking to Grant outside the Bristol show, he explained to me that they played it on their 2010 'Renegades'.
Grant announced the next song was for the really old school fans of the band and launched into 'Sweet 16' the grungier heavier sound making the crowd leap about once more. This to me was a welcome surprise to hear such an old song being played. 'Just the Way I'm Feeling' was next before the band launched into fan favourite 'Buck Rogers' the band playing the first 2 lines of the song slowly to get the crowd ready before launching into it properly. This was a song I knew I'd have to tighten my grip on the barrier for and I was right, as a couple of mosh pits opened up behind me, causing many folk to lose their place. The band thanked the audience for coming to see them and promptly left the stage to huge applause.
Then it was time for the encore, the crowd chanting 'FEEDER FEEDER' eagerly awaiting their return, the chanting members of the audience rewarded a few minutes later with the band taking to the stage once again to play a few more songs. Infrared-Ultraviolet was the last song they played off their latest album, this was followed up with '7 Days in The Sun' which they failed to play in Bristol so was great to hear. The crowd weren't as wild as I thought they were going to be tonight, I guess it was a school night! Then, the big one.... 'Just A Day' was originally a B-Side to '7 Days in the Sun' but was later released on the soundtrack to Gran Turismo 3 (Driving simulation game on the Playstation 3 console) where it made an immediate impact and has since been their biggest hit. I was hanging on for dear life whilst singing along with the lights from the stage blinding me on the front row. There was a lone crowd-surfer who was quickly taken care of by the friendly security team, the band rounded off the song to much applause and did their final bows and thanks.
Once the show had finished, remaining fans tried to get what they could I myself grabbing a setlist. A couple of hours after the show ,Grant and the rest of the band were in the bar area, happy to sign autographs for the fans that remained, something I was very pleased to see. They're really humble and down to earth guys that despite all their success were more than happy to give every single fan time to get a picture and the many signatures they craved.
Exeter was the smallest show on the tour but the band still managed to exude a HUGE stage presence and it was great to see that the venue had sold out. I myself am hoping for another tour next year and will certainly be going. The band deserve every success coming their way and it's so nice to see a band like FEEDER still have time for their fans. They'll certainly be welcomed back to Exeter with open arms should they return in the future.
Words by Adam Wareham & Steve Muscutt
Photography by © Julian Baird Photography