Take it to the Maximo with intimate gig from tyneside alt-rockers

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After a couple of years away from the limelight, Maximo Park are back - and they’re coming to the Capital tomorrow.

Last seen in 2009, the alt-rock band have been busy working on their fourth album of late (due for release in 2012). However, the Tynesiders have decided to take some time out from the studio and venture north of the Border to play this rare, one-off show.

So where are they playing exactly? The Corn Exchange? Nope. The Picture House, perhaps? Guess again. The Usher Hall? Uh-uh. Maximo Park may well command regular audiences of 4000, but on this occasion the Newcastle-based quintet will be taking to the smaller, more comfy confines of the Liquid Room.

It’s good news for those who like to see their idols up close and personal in an intimate venue. Unfortunately, it’s bad news for fans desperate to get their paws on a ticket. Indeed, briefs are already changing hands for vast sums on eBay, so if you don’t want to miss out, you might have to crack open the piggy-bank.

It’s a major coup for the Liquid Room, too - arguably the Victoria Street venue’s biggest gig since reopening earlier this year - and for those fortunate to be in attendance, you’ll be some of the first to hear Maximo Park’s new, unheard songs.

It’s also a chance to hear decent indie music that doesn’t consist of spotty lads wearing skinny jeans, submerging their music in swathes of tacky electronica.

Maximo Park are led by former art-teacher Paul Smith, a flamboyant singer renowned for his quirky dancing and kung fu-esque handchops.

A sort of cross between Morrissey and Jarvis Cocker, if you will.

In recent years, Smith’s band seemed to lose their way a bit, as anthemic tunes about coming-of-age and cultural isolation gave way to post-punk moods, plastic funk, and ever-increasing eccentricity on Smith’s part.

Still, the Geordie bunch still pack a punch, and you can bet your drainpipe trousers they’ll be champing at the bit to be back onstage again. Enjoy.

Maximo Park, Liquid Room, Victoria Street, tomorrow, 7pm, returns only, 0131-225 2564

BARRY GORDON