Here we are back in Glasgow for the first time in two years (thanks to recent events) and at a favourite venue of mine, Nice N Sleazy, to catch up with Japanese band BRIDEAR, their first time in Scotland. Their last time in the UK was back in 2019 where they performed in London at Metal Matsuri, the first all J-Metal festival outside of Japan where they went down a storm. The “Into The Dark Forever” UK and European tour is in support of their debut international album Bloody Bride, out now via Setsuzoku Records.
With no support band, BRIDEAR are on sharp and open with “Ghoul” from their Expose Your Emotions album, the guitars kick in not unlike a DragonForce opening salvo. What really hits you is Natsumi at the rear on the drums, what a powerhouse she is. The twin guitars of Misaki and Ayumi trading licks and Haru on bass bouncing about with Kimi on vocals taking us along at a great pace makes a fabulous opener from the girls with a busy loud crowd lapping it all up. The guitars kick in with a tight pop rock vibe with Natsumi pounding away as Kimi opens up that voice full stretch; a pity her voice was lost a bit in the mix tonight as the chorus riff on 2017 single “Ignite” is tremendous, a real crowd-bouncer of a track – the guitars are stunning on this track.
The girls power through “Mirror”, another from Expose Your Emotions, keeping that strong bouncy pop rock vibe going, before we get to “The Moment” from Bloody Bride with Haru getting all guttural along with Kimi’s soaring voice, a very multi-layered track with the guitars mixing with the two different vocal styles, making it a fantastic track live. The band “Pray” next from the Overturn the Doom album and my favourite track of the night with its furious guitar pace Ministry-style has the head going big style with great vocals from Kimi. As the crunching guitars and drums open up, we head back to Bloody Bride with “Keshin”, again a mixed vocal track. I don’t know where Haru gets that guttural sound from as she looks like butter wouldn’t melt in her mouth as she trades the rough with the smooth Kimi.
The bells chime as we head into the latest single a “Brave New World Revisited” before the guitars open up a battering salvo with the demon Natsumi pounding away on an Evanescence-style epic. Again, if Kimi’s vocals had been more to the front in the mix it would have been stunning live but that is a slight issue on an otherwise great performance from the band. We head into a triple pop rock salvo from Bloody Bride with “Starlight”, “Daybreak” and the heavier but bouncy “Dimensions” with its full hook-laden chorus and killer guitar licks, another favourite of mine tonight. The girls get “Sick” next with its heavy guitar and drums intro before Kimi’s fast paced vocals kick in followed by that guttural addition from Haku; a fabulous track.
We get the title track from Bloody Bride next, a real pop rock bouncer of a track with Natsumi really going for it on the drums, a guitar and vocal hook-laden killer track. A lone outing next from the Baryte album with a touch of a “Light in the Dark” as the twin guitars pull us in aided by the pounding drums as Haru opens up that guttural voice intermixed with Kimi’s soaring sonics, a fabulous end to the set. The girls go off for a short time to the crowd shouting one more song to which the girls oblige with “Again” from Expose Your Emotions, a full-on assault from the girls to end the show.
It was good to see a busy venue for BRIDEAR and to see the girls fully enjoying themselves including Natsumi telling us how much she had enjoyed the whisky while they were here. The band were truly fantastic tonight, Misaki and Ayumi on guitar were stunning, Haru on bass was a joy to watch and listen to, Kimi on vocals was great but we need her more to the front on the sound mix next time. The star for me tonight was Natsumi on drums, what a powerhouse she was, smiling away all night. A great band on their first visit to Scotland… and hopefully not their last as I thoroughly enjoyed tonight as did the bouncy vocal crowd here in Nice n Sleazy.
- The Moment
- Brave New World Revisited
- Bloody Bride
- Light in the Dark
- Again (encore)
Photos by Coops Gig Photography