The ‘Hef’, rest his soul, would have told you that sex sells. Everyone knows it and arguably, that’s what Pink Hotel were selling on stage at Komedia; a pulse-pounding, sweaty display of musical titillation.
They were supported by Five By Five, All That Glitters and Tell The Hoi, the first two of which unfortunately I missed, but I was lucky enough to review All That Glitters on a previous occasion and hopefully we’ll get to see Five By Five soon.
Tell The Hoi are a band who have been about in Bath for a while now, but I’d not seen yet. Boy, was I missing out. Initially, they looked run of the mill indie, but as soon as they started playing I realized there’s more to them .
They describe themselves as “Experimenting with psychedelic sounds and alternative structures…” and have an ambition to create new indie rock. ‘Psychedelic’ often sets off a subtle alarm bells for me, as it’s proved to mean ‘rambling nonsense’ in the past. Yes, the psychedelic aspect was there, but it wasn’t nonsense and far from rambling; rather more part of a pallet of many themes, so many, it was difficult making an association, which is great. Clearly, they’re achieving their ambition.
At times, I heard essence of Blur, Billie Idol, The Verve and in one song an ever so slight hint of Bachman-Turner of all things. Honestly, I couldn’t possibly associate them with any one artist and perhaps that’s why I’m an instant fan, that and the nostalgic amalgam of 80’s and 90’s bands they seem to embody.
Their attitude was endearing too. Harry Page, the frontman, wandered the stage with the charming swagger of someone who is there by accident, but is going to enjoy themselves.
I’m really looking forward to seeing them supporting at Meeking’s album launch in October.
A short hiatus and Pink Hotel took up their headline spot.
Sam Gotley’s hair is verging on the majestic and his look is now that of a young Dave Grohl with some, not all of, the dress sense of Steve Tyler.
The first song, Neon Clouds, exploded with rock fuelled enthusiasm and shook the room, leaving no doubt that the night was going to end with a kick in the cochlea and it segued beautifully into So Long Farewell, an interesting title for only the second song of the set, but hell it was good.
Their music has hints of Springstein, a bit of Alice Cooper and at times even a little Deep Purple and Thin Lizzy, all brought forward for a 21st Century audience.
It had been a while since I’d seen them and their sound has transformed, in part I feel, thanks to the added piano and Korg which brought a new scope to the songs, which, in the aforementioned erotic fashion, built with a brooding passion towards a writhing (audience included), earth-shattering… You get the picture.
Many of the songs seemed to have underlying themes of love and sexual encounters, some good, others dubious, like in the song ‘She doesn’t know’ and ‘Dressed in leather’.
They unleashed a couple of new tracks, including ‘Heaven’ and ‘My friend Mary’, the latter of which had a very pleasing reminiscent air of Green Day’s album “American Idiot”.
The crowd loved them, I loved them, what more can you ask for? Probably a record contract. Hopefully, that won’t be far off.
A final word about the venue. I have to hand it to Komedia, passed experiences of the sound quality at the venue had left me apprehensive about tonight’s gig, but they nailed it, with a fantastic sound mix and a lighting display that at times had me thinking I was in Tron. My faith is restored in this venue.
Written by @LordSkitch
Reviewed on 27 September 2017