By: Steve Fallows
Photos: Steve Fallows
The Ginger Wildheart Band | website | facebook | twitter |
The Deaf Institute, Manchester | July 18, 2016
Arranged after the Hey! Hello! Tour collapsed amidst the hunt for a new singer, Ginger took the chance to take his eponymous band out on the road for a few dates before ending up at the Ramblin’ Man Fair.
A red hot night in Manchester meant an even higher temperature inside the venue, and it only got hotter. Being that Ginger fans are the type that will show up early and support all of the bands on the bill, the venue was almost full and oven-like before the first band took to the stage. Massive Wagons were that first band and the Carnforth based five piece stormed the stage and produced a performance that would put most headline acts to shame. Egged on by an appreciative and noisy crowd, their straight up no nonsense hard rock went down a storm. One of the little known gems out there right now, hopefully not little known for too much longer.
Ryan Hamilton & The Traitors were up next, and after making the long journey from Texas to play in front of a crowd that had helped push his recent album well over its target on its recent pledge campaign. Musically very different to the other acts on the bill, they offered up a sound that took in elements of Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and Bruce Springsteen while still having a bit of heavier edge that mixes really well and again the crowd really took to them quickly. Ryan spoke of his love of England and the English language, particularly swearing and was determined to learn a new word every night. Some one in the crowd shouted out “Twatbasket” and from there, they performed an improvised song called ‘Twatbasket’. A really good atmosphere and someone that will be gaining fans on whatever bill he appears on. A great show.
By the time the Ginger Wildheart Band started the temperature had reached uncomfortable levels. They opened up straight away with three tracks from his much missed Silver Ginger 5 project, a huge sounding album that sounds even better live. In amongst the usual chats with the crowd, the band raced through a few tracks from the GASS project of a couple of years back and were pretty much perfect throughout. The small stage struggled to hold them all at times, and once the crowd started jumping as well, the front of the stage started shaking the band in the few moments they were stood still. A couple of Wildhearts songs before finishing the set wth another GASS track in ‘Ostracide’ and the crowd were both gutted that the show was finished, but happy to be able to go outside for some air, but then, the house lights hadn’t come on. Ginger and band soon reappeared and performed one of the best encores I have seen. A huge crowd singalong of Wildhearts classics ‘Geordie In Wonderland’, ‘Suckerpunch’ and the obligatory ’29 x The Pain’ and then it was finally time to step outside for some air, as much to ease the throat after that last few songs as anything else.
Ginger has been part of many bands and different line ups, but there seems to be something really strong about this group of musicians. With Toshi bouncing up and down on one side and the effortless cool of Hendrix / Phil Lynott hybrid Conny on the other side, the band are really tight and look like they are enjoying every single second, even in this hot, muggy atmosphere.
Set list: ‘Take It All Why Don’tcha’ – ‘Anyway But Maybe’ – ‘Sonic Shake’ – ‘Nasty Habit’ – ‘Mother City’ – ‘Do You?’ – ‘Only A Problem’ – ‘No One Smiled At Me Today’ – ‘I Wanna Be New’ – ‘Mazel Tov Cocktail’ – ‘Top Of The World’ – ‘Ostracide’ – ‘Geordie In Wonderland’ – ‘Suckerpunch’ – ’29 x The Pain’.