Hinds: Academy 2, Manchester

Running through the crowd post gig, pint in hand and high-fiving fans with the other, it seemed like the night was only just beginning for Spanish indie girl group Hinds, and what better way to start it than the show they had put on just moments before.

As people flooded through the doors of Manchester Academy 2, they were all followed by a look of relief as they saw the rest of the crowd. Everyone seemed to follow the same confusion as they arrived at the venue doors to find floods of middle aged men and women wearing flat caps and trouser braces – only to discover its was The Levellers playing Manchester Academy, and Hinds were playing next door.

With a mixture of teenage Spanish girls; Brit-pop nostalgic men; and loved up couples, the crowd wasn’t your usual combination. Hinds may have had a mix of ages and genders amongst their crowd but one thing they all had in common was that no one was there to cause any trouble, it was an incredibly laid back, amiable vibe which later became apparent summed up the bands ethos down to a tee.

There was youthful, childlike energy to Hinds songs, especially in songs like “Bamboo” and closing set song “Castigadas en el Granero”. Performed live they are even better than recorded, with overlapping vocals, grooving bass lines and euphoric choruses it’s impossible not to dance, or at least smile, when they are being played. What’s more is how much the band enjoyed playing their songs, they couldn’t wipe the smiles off their faces and didn’t stand still once.

It wasn’t the neatest of sounds, I think the band themselves would admit that they aren’t perfect and it can be a little sloppy at times, but if anything it just adds to their performance. It felt as though you were just sat in the rehearsal room with the band, they were totally themselves laughing and joking with each other and the crowd, playing some songs they’ve thrown together in their spare time.

Hinds arrived in the UK after a run of shows in Scandinavia, and are heading straight back to Spain to tour some more. They told Manchester that they had worked out they have drank 45,000 beers this year, inevitably followed by applause from the impressed Mancunians. Hinds have spent the past year touring non stop, and evidently having a great time, which just adds to their appeal as the most likeable band around.

Showing their naivety to UK culture, the girls proclaimed their love of London where they had been the night before, to a room full of slightly drunk Mancs which, unsurprisingly, was greeted by a series of boos. They managed to pull it back however, as they told everyone to “be nice and love each other” and that whilst they loved London, they had been told that like Madrid, Manchester was a working class city which is “what [they’re] all about.”

On top of this, it was impossible to be angry at the all girl group who oozed happiness on stage, as they danced along to ‘Saturday Night’ genuinely just loving every minute of being on stage with their best friends.

These girls have taken ‘girl power’ and made it better than it’s ever been, nothing fake or manufactured, just four girls travelling to different cities every night spreading the word of peace, love and happiness whilst making great music. I can only advise anyone who feels sad or down to go and watch Hinds perform, and you won’t be able to wipe the smile off your face.

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