‘The Feel Tour’ rolled into Manchester last week to play a sold out night at The Academy. Headlining act Sleeping With Sirens were joined on the road by The Summer Set and Hands Like Houses. With such an eclectic mix of bands there was good reason that it sold out and we knew that it was going to be a fun night for all involved.
Est.1987 headed down to the show to check out all the action and managed to catch up with a couple of the bands. Click below for our full report…
Having had their sophomore release on repeat for weeks, we were looking forward to seeing what their live show had to offer and as Hands Like Houses take to the stage it’s safe to say we weren’t the only ones excited. ‘Unimagine’, the latest album from the Australian six-piece, marks a definite step up for the band and it’s no surprise that the first track on the record opens up their live set here in Manchester. They may be supporting Sleeping With Sirens tonight, but the crowd has gathered in the venue early and is eager and willing to get involved. Opener, ‘Introduced Species’ delivers a powerful blow of anthemic rock filled to the brim with an infectious chorus, intricate riffs and a sprinkle of synths thrown in for good measure. The polished, more focused songs of the new record shine and, if you hadn’t heard of them before, the bands make their mark in Manchester tonight. There is definitely a sense of the laid-back Australian nature about these guys; keyboardist Jamal Sabet is in bare feet, and we kind of like it. They may be from across the other side of the world, but they look right at home up there. Dividing up the set between both albums, older songs such as ‘Don’t Look Now, I’m Being Followed. Act Normal’ with its soaring chorus and gang vocal breakdown, are played alongside the newer ‘Shapeshifters’. With six members up there, on stage they can easily fill the space but, instead of standing still they race up and down, and their energy is contagious with the audience bouncing up and down. The only thing we wanted was a longer set and we have no fear that Hands Like Houses will be welcomed back very soon. 7.5/10
To read an interview with the guys about about working on their second album, the Australian music scene and their new found love for British band Don Broco CLICK HERE
By the time that The Summer Set takes to the stage the venue is bursting and the crowd couldn’t be more excited about seeing the Arizona quintet on a UK stage. The last time we saw them they were in Manchester on a headline and they bring that same energy and force to their support show tonight. Back with their third album The Summer Set has very much come in to their own and their huge UK fanbase is evident here tonight, and the majority of the crowd at Manchester’s Academy 1 is a sea of movement as they sing along to every word. Quirky, pop-rock at its best, their set is filled with infectious hit after hit. Opener, ‘Lightning In A Bottle’, is upbeat and front-man Brian Dales delivers it perfectly in order to draw in the crowd, not that they need much encouragement. The Summer Set blitz through their high octane set; the anthemic and percussive ‘Rescue’ pitted against the sugary sweet love song ‘Someone Like You’. They may be a little sickly pop-rock for some people, but they are pretty hard to dislike, and their live set is undeniably refreshing. They bring a party energy to the stage and, as much as they lock down vocals and instruments, they are up there having fun and loving every single second of it. Older fan favourite, ‘Chelsea’, closes the set out on a high. An impressive performance by the five-piece and it’s safe to say the audience can’t wait to have them back on a headline tour soon. 9/10
To read an interview with front-man Brian Dales as he chats to us about life on the road, Christmas, and rapping in the shower CLICK HERE
The last time Sleeping With Sirens were in town they were down the road at the smaller Ritz venue; even then the venue was too small for them so it’s no surprise that tonight at the larger Manchester Academy 1 it’s another sellout. The band is riding the wave of success in the UK; the venue is packed and the screaming girls lining the front of the barrier tell us this. And if the screams calling the band to the stage aren’t loud enough, then the ones when front-man Kellin Quinn graces the stage reach another decibel. ‘Here We Go’ perfectly opens proceedings, and the action both on stage and off doesn’t stop until the end. Playing mostly from their latest album, ‘Feel’, the set is fast moving and high energy and they ease through tracks such as ‘Congratulations’ and the soaring ‘Free Now’. Throwing things back a little are heartfelt older songs ‘A Trophy Father’s Trophy Son’ and ‘Scene Five: With Ears to See, and Eyes to Hear’. Kellin’s vocal range is showed off to its full and he’s on point and effortless from start to finish. Although missing out a few big Sleeping With Sirens fan favourites, the post-hardcore pretty boys take to the stage once more for an encore of the gritty and uplifting ‘If You Can’t Hang’.
It’s safe to say that Sleeping With Sirens have stepped their live show up a notch since we last saw them, and we’re not just talking about the confetti cannon this time around. Blending heavy sounds with melodic choruses, they are tighter than ever before and seem to throw even more energy and force into their set. Joined on the road by Nick Martin (of D.R.U.G.S and Underminded) on guitar also adds a refreshing new dynamic to the live show. Sleeping With Sirens certainly don’t disappoint tonight; another successful sold out show under their belts, here’s to the next one, Manchester. 8/10