Another year, another Halestorm gig and another night out with the wife and our eldest who we are successfully steering in the direction of decent music. I think we’re actually running out of venues in Glasgow to see them in having caught them at the SECC, Academy, Garage (shifted from the Cathouse due to demand), Hydro and now the ABC.
However, opening bands first. Unfortunately – due to the ABC’s early doors/curfew policy – we once again missed a support band so I can’t report on Smoking Hearts. My apologies to them. Instead, we got there in good time for Dayshell.
This young band from California have just released their debut album and impressed us enough to buy a copy of it for our daughter. It’s always good to support acts who are just starting out, and when they work as hard as Dayshell and entertain as much then it just makes sense.
Singer Shayley battled through an obviously sore throat so probably wasn’t 100% on his game, but even taking this into account gave a great performance. The rest of the band were at least as energetic, belting out a range of songs and leaping around the stage.
There’s one thing Dayshell aren’t lacking, and that’s confidence. Certainly they’re good live and we’ll be giving the CD a listen to over the next few days to see how that compares.
It didn’t take long for Halestorm to wander on stage, though, and kick things up a notch with a typically good set. Despite only having the two albums out, they still mix things up a little by adding in a couple of covers. These are always good and this time round we got three of them – one Dio, one Judas Priest and one I have no idea. I think it’s called “Lucky” and the only exposure I’ve had to it before was as another cover/parody by Amateur Transplants.
Of their own material, though, we went through a “greatest hits” which is pretty impressive given the aforementioned small number of releases. Lzzy continues to blow people away as the front person for the band and Arjay is still one of the best drummers you’ll see live.
My list of drum solos you should actually enjoy consists of three: Joey Jordison when he was with Slipknot; Motley Crue; and Arjay of Halestorm. I’ve probably said this in every review, but he’s a rare drummer who takes as much of the spotlight as any other member of the band. Very watchable.
Lzzy’s gift is her voice which can range from guttural to gritty to breathy across songs, meaning the band’s range of tunes doesn’t sound forced. There aren’t any tracks that sound like someone suited to one genre trying to sing another as she’s more than able to fit into a rock anthem as much as a ballad.
Of course, it’s unfair not to mention the other two members. Joe’s a quality guitarist, but needs to know one thing – the lighting tech didn’t have decently aimed spot for him so my photos aren’t great. Dude, get that sorted! Josh is as good a bassist as a band can hope for and plays with a constant smile on his face. He comes across to me as an understated member of the band, but no less deserving of the limelight than his three colleagues.
The new song we heard (no name given) is one of their heavier ones, and I hope it’s an indication that a new album is progressing. I know they’re touring now, but here’s hoping that they get the time to put some tracks down in the studio by year’s end for number three.
The evening culminated in a blaze of lighters and phones with perfect closer “Here’s To Us” which my wife and I used at our wedding. At the venue where we got engaged. And this time sharing it with our eldest, seeing the first band we took her to see a year or so ago.
A great night in so many ways. I just wonder what venue they’ll play next time they roll into town. They sold out the ABC tonight, so they could be moving up in size again.