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Hornet / Motherload http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/64/61/6f/Hornet-Motherload-2013-Live-Review-Rocktopia-Thumb-75-1389738653.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     January 14, 2014    
 
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Hornet / Motherload - O2 Academy 2, London (UK) - 5th September 2013

It wasn't a huge crowd that descended on Islington, less than fifty people to be more precise, but this didn't deter either band from giving a full performance. Motherload, following the July 2013 release of their album 'Black and Blue', blasted their way through the set list with pulsing hooks and aggressive but accurate vocals. They made the most of their short stage time, diving from one song to the next with vocalist Tom Ford setting the example in stage presence. Gruff bass lines thudded out in the mix, though the drums were a little high, and the show culminated with 'Hang Your Head', a powerful, gutsy track from their album. The scale-orientated guitar solo could have been more explorative so it didn't feel quite so much like it had been practiced in a bedroom so much, but it's a minor point. The crowd were entertained and, as someone who has never seen Motherload live, they certainly gained a fan from me. A fun and passionate band that kept their performance simple and proved that there is a future for modern metal and thrash.

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The majority of the small crowd were there to see Hornet, however. The performance began energetically and only built in tempo. The delivery, however, was messy, the solos not clear and the vocals were more shouting than singing. While their recent album 'Skies Are Falling' (see my review in Fireworks #59) interestingly combines some punk and metal elements, this felt more of a continuation musically from one song into the next. 'Sweet Lips' had a strong, thumping bass part but the rest of it felt too much like crowded noise. Credit must be paid, however, to bassist Max Thompson and guitarist Tollef Rikje-Pearson for some great backing vocals. 'Second Hand Smoke' proved that Hornet is a solid band, though Rikje-Pearson's guitar solo along the bar top during 'Hunky Dorey' was a little too much show and not enough substance. There were flashing lights and platform box performances but the rhythms still felt rushed. Confetti bursting out at the end doesn't make a band tighter and vocalist Joe Thompson's touching up of himself with mannequin hands is something that wouldn't be missed. The crowd gave them a good reception but it was overconfident and, to secure more fans, there's still work to do.

Sophie Brownlee

Hornet-Motherload-2013-Live-Review-Rocktopia

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