Date: April 29th, 2014
Venue: Sound Control, Manchester
Support: Bentley Park / Crooks
Tonight, taking to the basement of Manchester’s Sound Control are the Australian post-hardcore boys of Hands Like Houses, on a 7 date tour of the UK after an appearance at Hit The Deck Festival, still promoting last year’s ‘Unimagine’. Whilst they may not be playing the biggest venues on offer, their fans seem eager to see the band from down under pull off one of the fantastic live performances they’re becoming known for.
Opening tonight and drawing the biggest crowd of the evening are local boys Bentley Park (****), who waste no time tearing into their set with the raucous screams of frontman James Shaw reverberating through the venue and whipping the crowd up into a storm. New tracks such as ‘Dear Luscious’ and ‘Sly//ther’ go down a treat and really warm the crowd up well, opening up a huge circle pit in the centre of the room to popular track ‘No Hope For The Hopeless’, marking a great start to the evening.
Up next are hardcore four-piece Crooks (***) who immediately kick things off incredibly fast-paced with frontman Josh bouncing across the stage in a frenzy to try and get the crowd involved. However, despite the band being the perfect support band for tonight, the crowd just aren’t getting involved. It could be due to the long instrumental sections of Crooks‘ set causing the crowd to lose momentum, but whenever there’s movement in the room it doesn’t last for very long.
A high-pitched scream greets headliners Hands Like Houses (*****), who have to squeeze together to fit everyone onto the small stage, an issue that becomes apparent as frontman Trenton Woodley begins to jump around the stage, narrowly avoiding colliding with fellow band members. They tear into songs scattered across both of their records, with fans eagerly singing along to new tracks ‘Developments’ and ‘The House You Built’, as well as old favourites ‘Lion Skin’ and ‘Don’t Look Now, I’m Being Followed, Act Normal’. The band keeps the crowd entertained with a fantastically consistent performance from vocalist Woodley throughout the set.
Bringing out the big hitters for the end of their set, ‘No Parallels’ and ‘Introduced Species’, Hands Like Houses round off a spectacular set, proving why they have such a reputation for their live performances. The crowd are left exhausted but extremely happy with the evening, and no doubt eager for this band to return to the UK soon.
Written by Jonathon Barlow