8th March | Thekla

As soon as the Londoners strutted in, clad with guitars and angst – I knew we were in for an awesome night. Opening the show with their hit single ‘Fly-by Alien’, the four-piece had everybody on the boat rocking out instantly, but nothing can prepare you for the intense energy of VANT.

From the moment that lead singer Mattie Vant appeared, you could tell that he meant business. Standing centre stage and dressed all in white, like an indie-rock angel with just one mission – to send the message that as human beings, we’re all equal. Seamlessly hopping from one faultless song to the next, the night progressed into the most impressive performance of the band’s latest LP, Dumb Blood. Ever the perfect front man, Vant thanked the crowd for their continued support, and shared hugs with his fellow band mates during the breaks; it was refreshing to see a band that are so politically driven with their music, yet so thankful and kind-hearted at the same time.

As expected, there were controversial comments aplenty, with Vant whipping off his t-shirt, and commenting on how his female counterparts would be treated if they did the same. Then came ‘Peace & Love’, ‘Time and Money’ and ‘Birth Certificate’, three songs which perfectly capture VANT’s message, while also being great tunes to rock to – as the crowd proved. Slipping into the 60s with ‘Mess Around’, guitarist Henry Eastham made everybody chuckle with his inaccurate knowledge of Thekla’s history, but his mistake was easily forgiven as the tunes were just so good.

The fresh, modern perspective on the world which VANT’s music transmits is something so admirable. Their lyrics are raw, truthful, and timeless, as they boldly address the many flaws of humankind. Finishing the show with the up-tempo ‘Parking Lot’, and some wise words to the crowd about ‘using their voice in the real world’, I left the boat feeling both inspired and enlightened, and I’m sure everybody else was right there with me.

If you can catch VANT before their tour ends then seriously don’t hesitate, as I can promise you won’t regret it!

Check out the video for ‘Peace & Love’ below.