Words by Damien Russell / Pics by Rob Hadley
You know you’re in for a good night when it’s door opening time and there are staff making sure the roads aren’t blocked. Monday night and a queue around the corner kind of good.
The 2,900-person capacity venue had enough room to get to the bar, just, and with crowd-surfing and moshing all through the evening these two young bands clearly instill excitement and enthusiasm in their fans.
High Tyde, a 4-piece like The Hunna, hit the stage with great energy and great reactions from the crowd. They kept the tempo high until the very end and only the introduction to ‘Dark Love’ showed a bit of a softer side we might see develop over time. As The Hunna said of them during their own set, High Tyde “smashed it”.
The Hunna came out to another great response from the crowd. A bit slow to start after their introduction music, but when they did kick in with ‘You & Me’ they kicked in hard. Singer/guitarist, Ryan Potter, sounded a little tired to begin with and I did wondered if the road was wearing them down. But The Hunna seem to be a band that feeds off the love from the crowd and kept building momentum up to the end of the night.
The Hunna have a real gift for writing a sing-a-long chorus and the crowd knew them all, every word. Ryan Potter let the crowd take the lead more than once or twice, basking in having his lyrics sung back to him.
But the highlight of the night was ‘We Could Be’, tucked into the last third of the set; a real powerhouse of a song, it’s clear why it’s one of The Hunna’s singles. Although somehow it felt like the end of the set and I half expected to see them to just walk off, but ‘Rock My Way’ and ‘Bonfire’ followed in quick succession. The actual ending (before the inevitable encore) was a proper rock show of feedback and noise; the roar of a crowd still hungry for hits.
The Hunna finished with a three song encore of ‘World is Ours’, ‘Brother’ and finally ‘Bad For You’ – all kicked off with another piece of musical Interlude. Again, the interlude and song didn’t quite flow smoothly; between this and some of Ryan Potter’s clichéd ‘Best Audience Ever’ style patter, I felt the edge was knocked off their performance. I’ve heard all the old rock lines used before and this gig brought no new ones to add to the list.
That said, throughout their set it was clear that The Hunna are totally into their music and love every note. Definitely a good night. And after the encore it was no less busy outside, but nobody seemed in a rush to go home and admit it was all over.
For more on The Hunna, visit www.facebook.com/thehunnaband
For more on High Tyde, visit www.wearehightyde.com
For more from the O2 Institute, including full event listing and online ticket sales, visit www.academymusicgroup.com/o2institutebirmingham
For more from Kilimanjaro Live, including full event listing and online ticket sales, visit www.myticket.co.uk