A big Easter weekend in Nottingham and we’ve got one beast of way to celebrate it. Hellyeah are in town on the very last night of their European leg of the ‘Undeniable’ tour. We’re more than ready to catch up with this lot again.
A long weekend means we’ve got two days to get over the hangover too. Double Jack’ all night then! It’s the cowboy way…
Opening up to the early arrivals is RavenEye, who we are pretty unfamiliar with, to be honest. We’re pleasantly surprised to hear them smash out some no frills heavy rock, sometimes verging on doomy riffs and more than a whiff of stoner here and there.
That combination will always catch our attention.
The three-piece make quite a racket and they soon take the show to the crowd as Oli and Aaron do the ‘Darkness-style stroll around the crowd.
Adam is not to be left out back on the drums as he takes to the microphone now and then and is a bundle of energy.
All in all they get us going for the main event in good fashion.
Things start off a little subdued with Hed PE concentrating on the reggae side of things for the first three songs. “Hey we’re doing reggae, where’s the Red Stripe” asks Jahred. He’s soon sorted on that score…
It’s not long until the place is bouncing however as Hed PE unleash some of their more metallic numbers. The band have drawn a few hardcore fans of their own to this show and there are plenty of folks around the floor of Rock City well and truly getting down to this lot, and we might just have thrown a few shapes into the mix too.
The lights go down and the intro to ‘Undeniable’ rumbles through the PA. We’re ready for some Hellyeah action. Vinnie strides up to his mountain of drums and does his usual accusatory point to the crowd before the lights turn red and bathed in blood, Chad Gray jumps onto the stage. He’s a ball of energy from the start leaping off the monitors and screaming his lungs out to the likes of ‘X’ and the crunchy as hell ‘Demons in the Dirt’.
We won’t gloss over the fact that the Rock City isn’t packed to the rafters tonight. It is bank holiday, we can’t think of anything better than partying with this lot, but Nottingham obviously has other plans tonight. There’s still a decent crowd down the front and the band play their asses off nonetheless, with those in attendance (including us) headbanging like our lives depend on it!
Hellyeah are not all foot-to-the floor bangers, ‘Hush’ is a slower number that oozes feeling and that unmistakable Hellyeah stomp. We’re all Phil Collins fans a CB, don’t tell anyone; Hellyeah’s version of ‘I Don’t Care Anymore’ is one we’ve been waiting to hear live. Another slower number for a reflective couple of minutes… a few of the CB crew will be seeing the main himself (Phil Collins) this summer to compare notes. The lucky b@$tards.
As thrilling as Hellyeah’s set is, we’ve always been a fan of THAT massive debut album and the band when operating in full-on southern fried, BBQ scorched and whisky soaked mode. So a finale of ‘You Wouldn’t Know’ and the big old ‘Hellyeah’ takes it back to the old school and gets us singing our little drunken hearts out!
“…Soaking up all the SUNSHINE”
As the lights come up for the end of the show, the band look just a little happy to have finished this jaunt of the tour. Kyle looks as though he might just do a little celebratory dance on stage and there are more than the average number of fist-pumps and hugs to close the show.
It may have been the last show of the tour and it may not have been the sold out show you would hope to wave them off back over the Atlantic with, but the band still put in a massive performance and set our Saturday night off to a flyer (Rock City curfew is 10:00pm, so we’ve got some drinking time left yet!)
Great to see Vinnie and the dudes again and it sounds as though they are already working on dates for early next year over here. HELLYEAH!
Nobody ever finished a Hellyeah review with a big “HELLYEAH!” before did they? Oh wait…