The Newcastle-based folk-rockers Holy Moly and the Crackers are currently on tour. It’s their final one for the foreseeable future, as they have sadly announced, too. Their first stop was at Nottingham Confetti college’s own venue, Metronome, supported by the wonderful local band, 5 Hills Out, and acoustic singer-songwriter Brad Dear. After seeing the band at The Long Road this year (review here), we couldn’t miss this one!
First up on the bill was Brad Dear. The local acoustic guy was the perfect warm-up act for the two bands coming up after. His voice translates perfectly live and fit the folky/gypsy vibe that the show as a whole had. And his original songs are really great. I can’t wait to hear more of his stuff, and I’ll definitely be seeing him again at my next opportunity!
Next up were the awesome 5 Hills Out. I’d actually never heard of them before seeing them here, but they certainly have a new fan in me! The band have such an interesting blend of styles, all of which they pull of well live. Whether it’s punk, ska, folky or even indie, just when I thought I’d nailed the band down sonically, they’d go and surprise me by switching it up. But as I said, the band played each style to perfection, and clearly had fun doing it. And they were practically playing to a hometown crowd too, which is always nice. I’m gonna have to keep an eye on them as they’re so close to me, and I’ll definitely be seeing them again when I can!
Finally, we reached the headliners, Holy Moly. My expectations were high after the last time I saw them, and yet they somehow managed to exceed them all over again. From the moment they took the stage to the last note they hit, they owned the place and had the crowd in the palm of their hands. They were up on stage for a while too, and it flew by like no time at all! Every single member of the band played and performed their asses off, while Conrad Bird and Ruth Lyon’s vocals were both on top form as usual.
Firing off plenty of their greatest hits, as well as tracks that they’ve not played recently or even at all, it was one hell of a setlist. Whether it was singing or dancing along, or nearly drawing tears with a ballad, the crowd were on-board every step of the way, too. While I completely understand why the band are taking a break, it will be such a shame to not be able to see them live any time soon. Not many bands bring this much fun and energy to the stage. It was one of my favourite live sets of the year, no question!
If you can get down to see any of these three acts any time soon, I cannot recommend it enough. This was one of the best gigs I’ve been to this year, easily, and it was down to all three of the acts. What a great night!