Last week I was faced with a dilema. Either take my Ma to see superstar medium/modern day Merlin Derek Acorah in the Waterfront, or go and cover the Eagles of Death Metal in the Mandela Hall. It was a simple enough choice (my Ma is hard as nails) but thanks to a dodgy bass amp, I ended up seeing both shows. Below is a review of the gig from this week’s Hot Press.
Eagles of Death Metal at the Mandela Hall, Belfast
To my right hand side there is a gaggle of guys walking around wearing fake moustaches and aviator shades. To my left there are a group of people clad in AC/DC t-shirts who are frankly old enough to know better and in front of me is one of the best good time rock ‘n’ roll bands on the planet-the Eagles of Death Metal. Tonight is their first ever visit to Belfast, and despite a few technical hiccups, Jesse “Boots Electric” Hughes and his team of misfits are bringing out the big guns with ‘I Only Want You,’ which prompts the ‘tache-wearing tunesmith to tell us “If rock crowds were canons then you just blew England outta the water baby!”
Jesse has every reason to boast a shit eating grin at the moment. Not only has his inaugural Belfast gig been upgraded to the much more roomier Mandela Hall, there are kids swinging from the rafters, sweat is literally dripping from the walls and the females in the crowd are all over him like Vanessa Feltz on a Mars Bar. As the band blaze through a set cherry picking the best of all three records (Peace, Love, Death Metal, Death By Sexy and new one Heart On) we get the feeling that if Jesse stopped slabbering inbetween every song then this would be the show of the year.
Still, ‘Bad Dream Momma,’ ‘Don’t Speak (I Came To Make A Bang)’ and ‘I Gotta Feeling (Just Nineteen)’ are pretty much perfect rock ‘n’ roll songs so we’ll forgive his over excitement. At one point during the night, Jesse’s almost smothered by a random pair of tights thrown by an amorous fan and as he holds up the hosiery along with more than a few bras he quips “I wanna thank y’all for the undergarments. I didn’t know they’d be in my size as well.”
You’d have to be a particularly picky punter not to raise a smile at an Eagles of Death Metal gig. Not only have they got the tunes (‘Cherry Cola’ and ‘I Want You So Hard’ nearly raise the roof off of the venue) but Boots Electric himself is as a fun as a week at the funfair. Next time though, we’d like to hear more of the songs and less of the chat.
The new issue of Hot Press is out now, so go check it out.