Hot Milk // Witch Fever // Modern Error // Live Review // Rescue Rooms // Nottingham
It’s mid-November and the queue for this gig is already reaching round the corner as doors open. The air is cold and the clouds look suspicious, and I now realise I forgot my umbrella. Again. But at least I won’t be outside too much, as tonight I’ll be seeing Hot Milk play at Rescue Rooms in Nottingham.
Modern Error open the night. The band is made up of the original two members from Peterborough, who are accompanied by two touring members. The band are still building up their fanbase, rooted within the growingly popular metal-core genre with added electronic and post-rock elements – there is definitely a thirst growing for this type of band.
Modern Error took to the stage in a laid-back manner but then got straight into their set with a burst of energy and vocals to match. I was INTO IT. Writing this review I currently have them on repeat on Spotify.
The energy all the members provided to the stage was immense and gave the impression of a band that was headlining. The mix of electronic elements with the metal gave a really great sound, one that I’m definitely into at this current experimental time in music. The vocalist had great soft and harsh vocals and I was just immediately brought into the world they were creating with their music.
I could see this band being popular among fans of I See Stars or The Word Alive (and if they supported either on a UK tour- that would be an insane gig to experience). I contemplated getting a photo with the band just to say “I WAS THERE” before they blew up but then I remembered, ah…I’m here as a “professional”.
Witch Fever was our second support for tonight. A 4-piece from Manchester with a punk twang, they are self-described as having “confrontational” lyrics and inspirations. It’s my second time shooting Witch Fever and safe to say the lighting here is immensely better than then. It was great seeing the band with a proper stage display with a mix of lights and flashes to match the energy of the performance this time around.
Started out a bit rocky, the microphone cable was faulty and kept cutting out, meaning the start of the set sounded like a post-rock band with an occasional noise sounding like feminine rage. But the band remained calm and kept on with the performance, after requesting a backup once the first song had wrapped. They didn’t let that hick-up knock them and just did what they knew- put on a stellar performance.
The vocalist gave a shout-out drawing attention to the current issues facing innocent people and boasted a Palestinian flag proudly on the amp. Later on, the vocalist boasted a gay pride coat handed to her by an audience member. The coat was comically too big, however, that she had to hang it up as she was unable to perform in it.
I want to give a paragraph shouting out the bassist; Her energy at every show I’ve seen her at is everything you want as an audience member. I love seeing instrumental members just go with the vibe of the songs and provide as much entertainment as the Vocalist. And that’s what she does. In the words of my generation, she slays.
After a 30-minute intermission, the stage got immediately bigger (most likely, as we all know, because Han is someone who needs the space) and two mic stands were set up on each side of the stage.
Hot Milk is a Manchester duo (with two touring members) who initially met in 2016. The pair went on to experiment with writing songs together and something clicked. They describe their sound as emo power-pop, “Singing sad songs with happy melodies”. The band have recently released their first full-length album, “A Call to the Void”.
With a bang and thick Manchester accent, on came Hot Milk. From the get-go go an absolute firestorm to contend with, with insane energy and riffs to get you moshing. The crowd quite agreed with my sentiment as we had an influx of crowd surfers, something I hadn’t seen all night. A pit opened up at the command of Han, and everyone in the room was up on their feet.
Hot Milk is a band I’ve been following for years, and hearing the crowd singing back the lyrics as loud as the vocalists fills me with a warm feeling. Seeing a crowd in such unison, I can understand why Jim got emotional towards the end of the show.
Both Jim and Han have such strong vocals and stability to match. Both reaching the highs and lows of the notes with such ease, whilst also playing the guitar or jumping around, is an amazing feat for a vocalist (let alone a band with two vocalists who have to match each other’s energy and tone).
The band weren’t shy about interacting with the fans. Even the touring members were coming to the front to interact with the crowd. Whether it was passing off lyrics for the crowd to finish, asking them if they’re “still here?” or simply trying to get them to clap to the beat. At the end of the gig, Han brought on a member of the audience to help them finish “Candy Coated Lies”. Han and Jim shared the responsibility of interaction and it really does engrain that the band are made up of two halves of the same idea. They work so great with each other that you’d almost think maybe they were raised together, but nah they met in a pub in their 20s.
The setlist tonight was made up of a whopping 17 songs which had us into the late hours. But none of the fans or band cared. The band gave their thanks to the fans for coming to see them and Jim even shed some tears expressing his thanks. The band wrapped with “Glass Spiders” (my personal fave of theirs) before bowing and promising to see Notts next time at Rock City (the upgraded venue with around a 2k cap).
It’s great seeing a band that makes you think it’s summer again with how sweaty it becomes. I waited a long time to see Hot Milk live and I can’t wait to see them again. An absolute firehouse of a British band that has been gaining traction almost every year. I’m excited to see where Hot Milk can reach and if you have a chance, don’t miss this band or the two supports (with as much promise as our headliner) and make sure to stream to “A Call to the Void”.