Friday 1 May 2015

Live Review: Blues Pills @ Club Academy Manchester, 24th April 2015

Blues Pills’ popularity has soared over the past year, a band with a relatively small discography (2 EP’s, a full length and a live album) under their belts; they have captured an audience with their funky fresh take on blues rock. With so much success early on in their career, living up to the expectation for their second album could prove tough; however judging by the musical talent they have already showcased, I have every faith. From their first EP ‘Bliss’ I developed an insatiable addiction to Blues Pills, tonight that addiction is satisfied with a dose of the Sweden based quartet playing live in Manchester.

Blues Pills have a noticeable mass appeal, the crowd tonight varying in age and from what I can gauge from the array of band shirts, musical taste also. From Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin fans all the way to Cannibal Corpse, its evident this is an undeniably likeable band offering something for everyone, and it’s easy to see why. Coming on stage with real energy and vigor, they kick things off with ‘High Class Woman’ the opening track off their self-titled album. The rumbling groovy bass lines along with phenomenal bluesy guitar work from Dorian Sorriaux, provides the perfect accompaniment to Elin Larsson’s powerhouse vocals. Blues Pills have crafted a vintage style of music but with a fresh modern twist that doesn’t replicate bands of their ilk, they play effortlessly tonight with ease and confidence, consequently a feel good atmosphere circulates around the room (doesn’t hurt that it’s a Friday night either!) 

Their biggest hit, ‘Devil Man’ is met to a rapturous reception as Larsson’s vocals truly shine. Not to detract from the other band members who are all exceedingly talented, the spotlight is on Larsson, whose rich soulful vocals and enrapturing stage presence is utterly captivating. Making jangling a tambourine look extremely cool, it’s almost impossible to pay attention to anything else but her. Predominantly  playing songs from the ‘Blues Pills’ album, the crowd is familiar with the majority of their set, ‘Ain’t No Change’ and ‘River’ go down particularly well. My personal favorite ‘Little Sun’ is played in the encore, emotional, powerful and downright soulful; it’s a spellbinding conclusion.  

Blues Pills brought their tremendous records to life tonight, a high energy enchanting performance that left the crowd in high spirits and ready to continue their Friday night festivities elsewhere. 

Words by: Heather Blewett