Photo credit: Simon Lewis
On a usual Saturday night in Liverpool, town is buzzing with the constant string of lads and lasses dolled up to the nines, ready to celebrate the weekend. But on this Saturday night, it was as if half of the city were squashed into the Theatre at Arts Club to support local lads The Hummingbirds.
Back in 2014 at Sound City I stumbled across the five-piece in the Bluecoat and instantly fell in love with their rocky essence combined with flawless harmonies and country rhythms, so I jumped at the opportunity to see them play live again!
There is always something magical about seeing a band play to a home crowd, but this was something else! The audience was seemingly made up of family and friends as well as long-established supporters of the band alike who had been following them since 2011. Add that to the intimacy of the Arts Club and it presented itself as a pretty special night from the word go. It was obvious that the band too were excited to be playing on home soil, but with that comes pressure and nerves as the anticipation leading up to this show was comparable to an 18th birthday party; you’re worried that no one will turn up, that a fight might break out, or someone will upset your Ma (all of which did not happen)!
As the five-piece walked on stage in the smokey haze, their name in lights behind them, the crowd roared to life with excitement. Kicking off their set with single ‘Emma’ ensured the whole crowd were up on their feet singing as loudly as possible and whistling along. Up next came ‘Out of the Rain’ and ‘Knocking On My Door’, both up-tempo with catchy choruses and country-like rhythms that you can’t help but tap your feet to. One of my favourites was the short and sweet ‘Tonight’, the B-side to ‘Emma’. The twangy guitar riffs paired with the 60s harmonies reminded me of bands like The Beatles, The Hollies and even The Beach Boys.
The five-piece played many songs from their debut album ‘Pieces of You’ which was released back in March on their own label, Gladstone Recording Co., but they also teased us with three new songs that they’ve recently written, hopefully to be released sometime next year! It is always a big deal to play unfamiliar songs, but there is no question their new music is greatly anticipated. One song in particular, ‘And, It’s You’, which was written and performed with the help of singer-songwriter Eleanor Nelly stood out, with its more acoustic feel placing their killer harmonies were on full show.
The gig felt particularly special and Liverpool pride was on a high when they played their songs ‘Home’, and closed with (my personal favourite) ‘Back in Liverpool‘. Although I myself am not a native Liverpudlian, the whole night made me feel extremely proud and privileged to be a part of this city and more importantly the music that it is producing.
The Hummingbirds are supporting Cast in December at their O2 Academy show so be sure to get down early if you’re heading to the gig, you will not be disappointed!