LIVE REVIEW: The First Ones at Saltaire

The First Ones at Roberts Park, Saltaire
Saturday 1 July, 2023

The reality of playing outdoors in the British summer hit home for Doug, Dan and Will at the Bradford Dragon Boat Festival.

But the Emley-based trio took things in their stride despite everything the elements threw at them during their performance.

One point a huge gust of wind almost threatened to blow the roof of the stage and guitarist Doug was doused with rain.

But one of things that’s so impressive about the First Ones is the way they deal with adversity in a live setting. Wet fretboards hold no terrors for Doug, who just gets on with delivering their distinctive brand of spiky pop rock.

Such self-confidence belies their tender years – these boys are frighteningly young! At Roberts Park, they won the admiration of a weather-beaten crowd for a set that mixed crowd-pleasing covers by the likes of the Stones Roses (“He’s certainly got a better voice than Ian Brown” observed one onlooker) and the Arctic Monkeys with their own compositions.

Opening track Red Ridge is a deceptively insistent grower while their most recent release Parallel Universe really gives Dan on bass and Will on drums a chance to let rip as much as Doug.

Not just the First Ones – but ones to watch for sure.


Simon Ashberry




This entry was posted in Bradford Beat and tagged on by .

About Simon

Simon Ashberry has been playing the best of local music on Bradford Beat for almost a quarter of a century . He was music columnist for the Telegraph & Argus for several years, covering local acts such as Embrace, Terrorvision, Tasmin Archer and New Model Army, and has played bass in several bands himself. He was previously part of Bradford-based Loom with John Rigby from Trip and Stumble and currently plays with innovative blues trio West Yorkshire Noblemen's Society.