Sugarwolf, House of Wolvxs and Heroine! at Satans Hollow: Live Review
Words and photos: Anthony Firmin
Back at Satan’s Hollow and just for a change I manage to catch the first band because Manchester based alt-rockers Heroine! are not starting at ridiculous o’clock. I am impressed from the start with a selection of songs that range in tone starting with The Wrong Way (released as a single in 2 weeks) and it is a serious statement of intent.
Their cover of the Chris Isaacs song Wicked Game cover is emotional and powerful, the angst in singer Becky Chamberlain’s voice as she sings “I don’t want to fall in love” is moving, especially balanced against the light and shade the band provide musically.
Final song Lions Den see’s the anger boil over into a tirade against a local promoter who treats women in bands with total contempt and disregard.
I have seen House of Wolvxs both rehearse, in the studio and live multiple times but tonight they are supplemented by Jack Dutton from Parting Gift on bass. Their set starts raucously with songs including Lost In Relevance, Fall To Pieces and new song Lost And Lonely, and considering this is only their third gig the performance is top notch, Jack managing to drill the bass lines out of his instrument as you would expect a guitarist to do.
Mental health needs to be taken more seriously and the band have written a song about dealing with it in Empty Space, it is slower and more thoughtful with singer Danni Hicks emotive vocals cutting through the mix. Personal Stranger, another song from experiences, replete with catchy chorus, is going to be a single that “drops” in April.
Over from Ireland on a short tour are Sugarwolf (they used to be Making Monsters) who jump straight into Deaf Wolf and the thunderous Thunder before the synth lead of the short and sweet Loose Ends kicks in with the band bouncing all over the circular stage. Even their drummer getting excited by events as the huge voice of Emma Gallagher bellows forth in their alt-rock songs yet they manage to retain a pop sensibility alongside.
The crowd has grown somewhat for the headliners who, with Tiny Trees, continue the alt-rock barrage, and you can see why they are headlining too - tighter both in the songs, and the performance. But all good things come to an end and Secrets closes out their set, but with Satan overlooking the stage and a 9:30 curfew there was sadly no time for an encore.