So the start of SOYO’s year of live music was delayed slightly by the weather, seemed it was down to See Emily Play, The Hot Soles and The 1975’s to kick year off and it certainly went with a lot of hustle and a hell of a lot of hype.
Fashioned with her what is soon to be trademark beehive and a 50s style dress, a shoeless See Emily Play swiftly starts the evening off. With all eyes set to the illuminated stage, Emily complete with her backing band quickly captures everyone’s attention. The dramatic sounds of songs such as Fair Game, to the big band styling of Let’s Go Get Away and the honest heartbreaking Memo astound those watching. Emily’s vocals flicker emotion complete with a cheeky glint in her eyes, it’s easy to see beyond the severity of some the deep and meaningful lyrics that everything is going be okay, as she sings in The Best Day ‘because I’m sitting here with you’, and she is, in fact, okay and we’re okay because what is before us is simply beautiful.
Close to the end of her set Emily asks the crowd if they are looking forward to headliners The 1975’s greeted with a few cheers, she follows asking if people looking forward to The Hot Soles to which there is a rapturous response. It seems The Hot Soles can do no wrong ‘round these parts. Having jetted back from a mini tour in Italy and having not played in Sheffield for a while they were met with a welcoming audience, many of whom were simply there to see the explosive bluesy duo.
If you’ve ever seen the film Blues Brothers, the original not the poxy remake, then think of the soundtrack, fast and furious with a lot of blues and an astounding amount of soul, then you have The Hot Soles. Firing on all cylinders frontman Kieran bounds around the stage waving his guitar around like a mentalist, he’s having fun, a hell of a lot of fun. There’s chit chat, there’s plenty of beats and riff with their tunes including Ready To Burn and Call The Regulator fill every inch of SOYO – man they are something else.
Our headliners tonight, The 1975, are midway through their UK tour, vastly hyped by the media, it seems that these are the current darlings of the music press and by the looks of the crowd they are what young girls dreams are filled with. At this point of the night SOYO is packed, there’s no room to stand and even getting to and from the bar takes a lot of ‘excuse me’ and ‘sorries’, it seems that many are trying to get as close to the front as they can simply to catch a glimpse of The 1975’s.
The Manchester four-piece don’t look how they sound, they’re a bit moody and a bit scruff but musically they’re rather well produced. Mixing a very 1980’s pop-esque sound with a bit of funk and a hint of indie (maybe that’s just the skinny jeans), it’s a bit of a come down from our rock ‘n’ roll feast courtesy of The Hot Soles. Nevertheless, we’re embraced in their world, which consists of Sex, Chocolate and erm Facedown. There was hair flicking, boy band stares and a hint of bitchy banter with a girl in the audience who simply requested for them to ‘take their tops off’ obviously they aren’t an actual boy band as this request would have been dealt with in a second.
As with any gig filled with eclectic mix you take the rough with the smooth especially when it comes to each and everyone’s own individual taste. This was a memorable night for many reasons and certainly put smiles on each and everyone who attended.