Broken Hands first came onto my radar at the beginning of last year, their “Silver Landing Program” was turning heads, and understandably so. A change in direction caused the band to introduce a radical new idea for their live show. In short, cover the entire venue in silver, or, tin foil if you prefer. What at first sounds ridiculous, once you add the awesome light show full of colourful strobes it really would be an experience. Tonight however is just a normal show, apart from the two 6 foot reflective umbrellas at the back of the stage, and the strobe lights are back.
The 5-piece enter the stage through the budding crowd, all dressed in black with the exception of frontman Dale Norton, who is sporting a white lab coat over his black uniform. He bounces off the balls of his feet, left to right, left to right “come on Manchester, let’s build something here” he repeats. His energy is pretty unbelievable, to my surprise a look down at the stage floor reveals there isn’t actually a built in trampoline. He’s going so high, and seems quite high.
The relentless riffs of ‘Meteor’ and strong melodies in ‘Death Grip’ leave the audience craving for more. It’s thumping drums and psych guitars fill the room, bright green lights reflect off the mirrored umbrellas, dancing erratically around. Norton’s voice is like a brisk summer day, vivid and clear but with a cool undercurrent. It’s so naturally strong that it breaks through the wall of sound created by the other four members. A young voice with hints of Jagger and Molko at times, one not to be disregarded. Broken Hands smash through brilliant song after brilliant song, the crowd getting more involved as the night goes on. Despite being almost blind from the strobes and deaf from the immense sound coming out of the speakers, I would still recommend seeing Broken Hands live to anyone. Now that’s saying something.