Tonight see’s night three of a heroic return to Belfast for And So I Watch You From A Far, after playing The Telegraph Building in Dec 2017 they opted for a more intimate setting to celebrate the 10 Year Anniversary of their self-titled debut album released way back in 2009. Having sold out this date in no time at all a second date was added, and a third to meet demand. Tonight’s crowd were the original ticket holders for the first date announced, the diehard’s, so this is going to be epic.
Catalan has a quirky N.I musical style and with a following of their own in the room for shizzle they provide an energetic start to tonight’s proceedings. With punchy tracks Catalan has the crowd singing along in no time, short, sharp songs that immediately get under your skin have u tapping your feet and warbling along. A wee animal on drums, laying down thumping rhythms on those skins whilst the band throw out pop-infused indie rock melodic, catchy and highly addictive songs that go down well with a packed out voodoo Belfast. Just like their songs Catalan’s set was short and sweet but straight to the point – and well received by the voodoo faithful.
The sounds of Black Sabbath ring out across the room as the changeover takes place – it’s a party atmosphere in here tonight – the first day of good weather we’ve seen in what feels like a lifetime means the Norn Irish crowd are up for this. Tonight especially was the first date announced in Belfast, the second and third date sold out off the back of the demand for tonight’s tickets, so here we have a room full of passionate, dedicated ASIWYFA fans who are here to Rock.
10 pm on the dot the lights drop and a roar rises from the crowd – a hefty instrumental intro brings a hush across the crowd as they await the arrival of Belfast’s favourite sons. A smoke filled stage awaits the quartet as the crowd clambers forward in anticipation. The room is packed, front to back and as the band take the stage they surge forward to up close and personal with the lads as they take their stances. The opening bar of ‘Set Guitars to Kill’ rings out and Voodoo loses its shit! The place goes wild as the strobes kick in; fighting to find a position to get a photo whilst waiting for the light to be useable to capture the guys in action feels like a lifetime. Whilst atmospheric it’s a bitch to work in! Voodoo as a venue being so intimate means the crowd are practically on the stage with the band so you do have to wrestle your way through the crowd to mix it up, that said whilst the crowd and moshing away to the soundtrack of this 2009 classic album they respectfully give you some space.
As ‘A Little Bit of Solidarity Goes a Long Way’ kicks in so does the intensity in the room, full on chaos ensues and Voodoo is bouncing, Surprisingly as I look around the room for an instrumental band there is a healthy split of men and women in the crowd, great to see and not only are they there in numbers they are into it as much as the gents are too! You could be forgiven that such a gig could be a total co*k-fest but not tonight as ASIWYFA is being represented! Ladies are in the his-ouse! The riffs keep coming from the lads on stage, the crowd are giving it back in droves and the room is a joy to watch as both parties are intertwined in this crazy-beautiful explosion of melodic-prog infested metal and healthy respect from the crowd. The guys are on form musically it’s a majestic performance and on night three they’re showing no signs of wanting to slow down, more like the opposite as I am sure there will be a party atmosphere tonight after a trio of sold-out home shows. I make my way to the back of the room to take in the rest of the show, absorbing the nuances across the set and the interaction between the fans and the band and it’s a beautiful sight to see, the impact felt by those clambering up towards the stage, the passion on display and performance from the lads matched only by the strength, intensity and stamina of their fans down below. A brilliant night all round, in one of Belfast’s finest purveyors of Rock & Metal, a fitting tribute to a landmark album by one of Northern Ireland’s most unique bands, ASIWYFA and Voodoo Belfast both delivered along with an army of dedicated fans, can you say you were there?
- “Set Guitars to Kill”
- “A Little Bit of Solidarity goes a Long Way”
- “Clench Fists, Grit Teeth…Go!”
- “I Capture Castles”
- “Start a Band”
- “Tip of the Hat, Punch in the Face”
- “If It Ain’t Broke…Break It”
- “These Riots Are Just the Beginning”
- “Don’t Waste Time Doing Things You Hate”
- “The Voiceless”
- “Eat the City, Eat It Whole”
- Rory Friers – Guitar
- Tony Wright – guitar
- Jonathan Adger -Bass
- Chris Wee –Drums
Review & Photography
Mark McGrogan // https://markmcgrogan.com
#flashartmark // @flashartmark