Fresh off the back of their number one album Marks to Prove It, it feels as though The Maccabees have truly arrived at a point of maturity that is a million miles away from their Inbetweeners soundtracked, frantic debut, Colour It In.
Reading 2015 sees the Sunday main stage join together to create an unmistakable crescendo towards the eponymous headline and sub-headline slots of The Libertines and Kendrick Lemar respectively. Here, The Maccabees go above and beyond the call of duty stealing a march over this Sunday afternoon groove, leaving big boots to fill for Jamie T, Kendrick and eventually, The Libertines.
Playing a mixture all four of their studio albums to date, The Maccabees prove adaptable, relevant, but most importantly, respectful towards the collective will of those they are playing to. It is refreshing to see a band maintain the same DNA that initially stole the hearts of the UK, where all temptation lies in shying away from legacies of old - Ben Howard, we’re looking at you. Equally, to The Maccabees’ credit, they now offer a more mature soundspace that within the youthful enthusiasm of tracks such as Can You Give It and Precious Time displays a band thinking more closely at the inner vibrancy of experimentation and development.
Today, the enigmatic and slightly introspective character of singer Orlando Weeks provides a charming and intriguing centre point for The Maccabees’ live show. There is a slightly unspoken thoughtfulness and depth to Weeks who surveys and analyses the views in front of him, allowing guitarists Hugo and Felix White to roam to either side of him. With this visual landscape, The Maccabees excel. Sitting beautifully upon tracks such as Love You Better and the heart-warmingly direct Something Like Happiness, Weeks boasts a marvelously delicate tonality that perfectly compliments the more heavier elements within songs such as Marks to Prove It and in places, Feel To Follow.
Moving forward, much to the delight of their far-stretching audience, The Maccabees deliver a storming rendition of Precious Time, followed by a true piece of cherished Maccabees folklore, Latchmere, which is set aside by Meeks as a thank you for the continued ‘dedication’ of the Reading faithful.
Before playing closing song Pelican, Weeks remarks that ‘we we’re just getting going’ and in the context of today’s performance, it feels as though Weeks’ words weave on a far greater level than just here in the fields of Reading Festival. With a UK tour on the horizon and an ever-expanding live show, it feels like The Maccabees are whirring into action in a very big way.