Halestorm : An Evening With Halestorm // Live Review // The Ulster Hall // Belfast
So 2022 so far hasn’t quite worked out how we would have liked it, on one hand, the pandemic seems to be in the rearview mirror, yet with Europe, in various states of flux as far as recovery and now the heartbreaking situation in Ukraine, there is no consistency sadly and many of the bigger American bands seemed to have fallen by the wayside touring wise locally. All but one, the mighty Halestorm put their heads together and figured out how to single-handed conquer the UK and Ireland!
Praise be to the baby Jesus they did cos we are literally gagging for a decent gig! Now let’s be fair we have had plenty of great UK bands come through locally over the last while but we do love a bit of American charm and tonight we are in for a real treat. An Evening With Halestorm is a two-part extravaganza, an acoustic set and an electric set to make up for two odd years in the wilderness.
Fair play to them for being here at all and secondly going the extra mile with such a unique show to blow the cobwebs off after sitting on the sidelines for such a prolonged time. The queue outside the infamous Ulster Hall in Belfast is around the block and that is no exaggeration! I can’t honestly remember a demand so high for a band at this venue and after the bands, 2018 Telegraph Building show their reputation as a live entity went skyward.
As the lights dim and the band takes their place on stage you can feel the anticipation in the air that tonight really is going to be something pretty special. By the end of the opening song, this indeed has been confirmed. Lzzy Hale has a voice that pierces the soul and in an acoustic environment mesmerises the Ulster Hall. The guys in the band can barely stay in their seats as the adrenaline pushes them up and down from song to song as Lzzy perfectly engages with the audience. Closing off the acoustic part of the evening solo with three emotive numbers that have the audience eating out of the palm of her hand.
As Lzzy and co. Step off to get ready for the second part of the show Lzzy’s little brother Arejay steps up to entertain us with his quick wit and cheesy jokes. He’s a brave man indeed taking on the Belfast hecklers but he has live to tell the tale, the crew get on stage to get the set ready for the electric set and the energy in the room once again builds up in anticipation.
So whilst the acoustic set was the appetiser the electric set is the whole shebang! A light show to blow your mind and a band that encapsulates modern-day rock at its finest! Stellar musicianship on all fronts led by one of the finest frontwomen in the business, as a total package they are hard to beat. We get three songs in the pit to capture the band working their magic and that is so easy to do, the energy from the stage is magnetic and the light is glorious, they make the job so easy. The crowd are loving every minute as the band rip their way through a blistering set, four studio albums in the bag and another on the way ‘Back From The Dead’ in May 2022, Halestorm have the world in the palm of their hands.
Halestorm has grown from a childhood dream of siblings Lzzy and Arejay Hale into one of the most celebrated rock bands of the last two decades. Halestorm’s music has now surpassed a billion streams worldwide. Called a “muscular, adventurous, and especially relevant rock record” by Rolling Stone, Vicious earned the band their second Grammy nomination, for Best Hard Rock Performance for the song “Uncomfortable,” the band’s fourth #1 at rock radio, and led Loudwire to name Halestorm “Rock Artist of the Decade” in 2019. Fronted by the incomparable Lzzy Hale – the first female Brand Ambassador for Gibson Guitars – with drummer Arejay Hale, guitarist Joe Hottinger, and bass player Josh Smith, Halestorm has earned a reputation as a powerful live music force, headlining sold-out shows and topping festival bills around the world, and sharing the stage with icons including Heaven & Hell, Alice Cooper, and Joan Jett to name but a few.
They still have a few dates left in the UK before flying home.
Photography: @flashartmark // #flashartmark for @ Rock ‘N’ Load
Mon 7th Mar – UK – Glasgow, Barrowlands (SOLD OUT)
Wed 9th Mar – UK – Newcastle, O2 City Hall (tickets)
Thu 10th Mar – UK – Cardiff, Great Hall (SOLD OUT)
Sat 12th Mar – UK – Sheffield, O2 Academy (SOLD OUT)
Sun 13th Mar – UK – London, O2 Shepherds Bush Empire (SOLD OUT)
Recently, the band announced Back From The Dead, their fifth studio album due out May 6, 2022, and follow-up to 2018’s Vicious. Back From The Dead is available in multiple formats for fans to pre-save and pre-order now here.
Produced by Nick Raskulinecz (Foo Fighters, Mastodon, Alice in Chains) with co-production by Scott Stevens (Shinedown, Daughtry, New Years Day), Back From The Dead quickly evolved from songwriting exercises into a matter of survival for the band. Lead singer Lzzy Hale says, “We started writing this album about three months B.C. (Before COVID). Once we went into lockdown and were unable to perform and tour, I fell into a dark place and something of an identity crisis. This album is the story of me carving myself out of that abyss. It is a journey of navigating mental health, debauchery, survival, redemption, rediscovery, and still maintaining faith in humanity.”