On Monday, Mind Noise Network had the pleasure of attending a show from Halestorm‘s first ever UK arena tour. It was loud, heavy and theatrical, inducting the band to the hall of bonafide big stage legends and leaving no doubt that they’ll belong there forever. Let’s get into the night.

New Years Day

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Photo Credit Rebecca Marshall

Yr favourite New Gravers, right!? It turns out this lot are still doing the rounds and despite not visiting the UK in three years there are people who remember them. Fortunately all changed once the band came on stage and commanded the crowd like they had a point to prove, like they knew without a doubt that they’d also be headlining these stages eventually. On nights like these, the audience will eat up everything you tell them, they love the metal, the theatrics and the goth, and New Years Day served it.

The set was surprisingly fun even for the *let’s say, not New Years Day fans* in the room. Despite the band’s music being fairly average hard rock, on nights like these its the performance, attitude and deameanour that matters almost as much, and frontwoman Ash Costello had it all. Attacking the stage, she set the night up for the badass power that was to come.

Finally. Requesting the audience throw their rock horns in the air and stay there in respect for Vinnie Paul and Dimebag Darrell while the band blast out a cover of Pantera’s ‘Fucking Hostile’, that was a great touch. Nothing felt impulsive or original about the band, but that didn’t stop them from putting on a great opening set.

In This Moment

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Photo Credit Rebecca Marshall

Ahh so THIS is where all the ticket payer’s money has gone? On a crypt for In This Moment frontwoman Maria Brink to walk in and out of between every song for an outfit change. Ok, cool if you wanted cabaret with your metal, I guess?

What I’m trying to say is that for an hour, the In This Moment band played a soundtrack for Brink to play dress up and whine into the microphone. It was performance art featuring bad music and a frontwoman who lacked all sincerity, but it was a great opportunity to people to get their phones out and capture it all.

Camp is great and so is cameraderie, and its been ingrained in metal since forever, but it only works when the music remains at the forefront of the set, and all of this was lost with In This Moment. But that’s just me, the average Halestorm fan seemed to enjoy the set pieces and heaviness, revelling in the musical crossover between the two bands. There are few bands that work better playing second fiddle to Halestorm.

Halestorm

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Photo Credit Rebecca Marshall

Over the years and around the Nottingham area, I’ve watched Halestorm work their way up stages whether that be Rock City, arena support slots or Download stages, everytime they come back with a few more hits but most things stay largely the same. A Halestorm show is always good, heavy and features certain set bits, you know what you’re going to get and you never leave disappointed.

Despite a few setlist switch ups and a surprise or two (I’m looking at you, ‘In Your Room’ and the cover of ‘Someone Like You’) Halestorm put on the arena headline show we know they’ve always been capable of. Since they first visited England they’ve been putting on sets this good, just waiting for everyone else to catch up on the hype, and you can tell they were elated to finally make it onto this stage.

The show felt special and the band seemed high on enthusiasm, bursting into solos and extended jams like they were kids in their garage, working the audience up and giving then everything they need. With songs like ‘I Miss the Misery’, ‘Black Vultures’ and ‘Love Bites (So do I)’ in Halestorm’s arsenal, they’re able to fire up the audience and hold them there for 90 minutes but unfortunately they didn’t put this all into practice. Letting the pace slightly drop before the encore, the band lost momentum in a way that they shouldn’t with as many anthems as they have.

Despite the lull, frontwoman Lzzy Hale was striking throughout the set, playing to the crowd with her powerful vocals and commanding the audience every time she spoke. The band themselves were also on top form and even managed to pulled off the rare feat of an engaging bass solo. These four know exactly what makes a good rock show and they constantly show it. Halestorm smashed their first outing as a arena headlining band and with this level of consistency will hopefully push forward momentum to comfortably selling out these shows and maybe headlining download. They’re doing everything they can to be within touching distance of an AC/DC or Kiss live and lets hope they make it there.