The Hotelier – Manchester – 23/01/2017

The Hotelier this year have come round on their Goodness tour, which is supporting their latest album. The Hotelier have come over to the UK with support Crying for a string of shows which have been filled to the brim with words being shouted back and some Gameboy samples.

Kicking off the night in Manchester was a local act called Grotbags, the quartet seemed to not fit in with the night when they first took the stage as a few words were shared between members, but in reality the band truly brought an air of levity to the evening. After a few passing jokes which got a good laugh from those who understood and related to what they four were saying they quickly jumped in to what they labelled as their theme song Grotbags Theme it was very evident that not only did these guys know how to play but the crowd were in for a treat. Following on from this the band powered through tracks such as Cute, Muscle Touch and Fried Egg which all were interesting to say the least mixing some interesting and at times intricate riffs together with fun lyrics and a good on stage presence.

After a brief break to crack some jokes the band yet again powered through more of their original material such as Alarm Clock, which was a true highlight of Grotbags set, Yabba Dabba Boo and Trigger Warning which  were filled with yet more intricate riffs which allowed them to provide the crowd present to see what this band are capable and will be capable of in the near future, if they ever get the chance to catch them again. Unfortunately despite playing well there was still something about this band that didn’t truly make them feel like the perfect choice for the night that lay ahead. However, at the same time when the band said they only had two songs left, it felt like their set was short lived.Yet this brought the band to Kisses which yet again was filled with interesting riffs and well orchestrated vocal melodies and backing beats. Ending Grotbags set was Dinner Men a song which after a small request was filled with strobe lights and gold lighting and was a moment that many wouldn’t forget too soon. [6/10]

Next on during the evening was Crying and after a brief introduction the band kicked in with Premonitory Dream, it was clear from the off that this band were coming in strong and wished to make an impression on the Manchester crowd during this first trip to the UK. Following swiftly on from Premonitory Dream was Wool In The Wash, which not only got the room moving with Elaiza Santos’ flawless vocal delivery but also Ryan Galloway’s impressive technical skills on guitar which blended beautifully with the tours stand in drummer but also the electronic undertones that many fans of Crying know all too well.

Following was Patriot, another track off the bands latest album Through The Fleeting Gales from which a majority of the bands set came from. Yet again the band were impressive with some beautifully crafted technique and instrumentation, through out most of the set and particularly in this moment the band showed how well they play together. Coming next was a track from Second Wind, the first of three track tracks from their older EP’s, which brought along the heavy and well crafted chiptune that the band became so well known for in 2014, it was in this moment the band truly showed how well they play live getting the entire room bobbing along with the tight instrumentation and electronic backing that laced this track.

After a quick rally that featured Through The Fleeting Gales highlights Revive and Well and Spring the band found themselves at one of their greatest songs that came from the bands first EP Get Olde, ES. With the intricate samples and simple instrumentation there was something special about hearing this track being played in person, not only due to the well orchestrated performance from the band on stage but also through the tight presentation of all the parts that come together for that track. After a near perfect rendition of Easy Flight which yet again helped leave an impression on everyone in the room the band quickly jumped in to their track A Sudden Gust, a song which provided a great insight in to Santos’ beautifully crafted lyrics and the entire bands amazingly tight composition. Following on from this the band move on in to There Was A Door which ended their set, but this where one issue lied, this set felt short, in a sense too short. However they still provided the crowd in Manchester with a near flawless set from start to finish not only in terms of Santos’ vocal performance but also in terms of their well orchestrated instrumentation. [8/10]

After a short few minutes the lights went down and The Hotelier took to the stage with an explosive opening which fitted well with the track An Introduction To The Album, and just like last time the band took to UK stages they didn’t disappoint with the entire crowd yelling back words and getting involved with every second of the bands strong opening. Following quickly on from this the band moved in to The Scope of All This Rebuilding which yet again showed the bands musical prowess and tight instrumentation as Christian Holden’s vocals echoed through the venue. After a brief instrumental the band then jumped in to two tracks of their latest album Goodness with Two Deliverances and Piano Player. It was in this moment the band made a minor mistake but soon continued as if it never occurred which not only showed their ability to recover quickly but also continue despite these minor slip ups that may stumble a band with less experience.

Following on from this the band swiftly moved in to Among The Wildflowers, which yet again went down a storm with not a single voice being left out from the crowd as everyone sang back words to the quartet. The Hotelier’s musical prowess was clear through not only how the held themselves upon the stage but through the tight instrumentation presented through this track and the entirety of the bands set. After Life in Drag, Soft Animal and Sun the band seemed to be powering through their set but soon after a few passing words to the crowd the band landed firmly at the start of Your Deep Rest. A song which truly was the highlight of their set not only due to this being the best song of the entire night but also through the emotion which was conveyed through Christian’s vocals and the voices of the crowd alike.  Following on from this The Hotelier moved swiftly through Weathered and You In This Light which yet again passed by in the blink of an eye but truly cemented the fact that this show was not going to be soon forgotten by the crowd. However, this is where The Hotelier hit a snag with a broken bass string there was alot of fumbling on stage and swapping of instruments for the band preparing to play what was meant to be the final song Goodness PT.2 but after being what Christian Holden labelled as patient the band decided to play a few more tracks.

During Goodness Pt.2 there was no bass evident which truly was a shame considering the mass role it plays in the songs composition. But soon the band came in to full swing, after a re-string, in to Dendron which was beautifully executed as the band began the wind down toward the end of their set. During Dendron it was clear that The Hotelier were yet again wishing to show off their skill in terms of their instrumentation and vocal delivery. This brought The Hotelier to the end of their set with a heart felt rendition of Opening Mail For My Grandmother which echoed through the entire room and left a lasting impression on many people in the room long after the show was over. Through this track alone it was evident of how important all of the songs they had played during the night meant to the band but also in a sense to the rest of the room. Overall The Hotelier truly provided the crowd in Manchester with a brilliant performance and yet again with very minimal mistakes played almost flawlessly from start to finish [9/10]