Thursday, February 02, 2012

Warming the freezing nights with great vocals

2nd February 2012 - HMV Next Big Thing 2012: Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves of Destiny supported by Kyla La Grange and Olfar
Having been spoilt for choose, my first HMV NBT gig was Upstairs at The Garage – once initial confusion about the correct queue for the upstairs gig, rather than large downstairs gig in the same series - Reckless Love supported by Jettblack and The Treatment, we where allowed in, out of the freezing cold, as winter finally arrived – the perfect excuse for spending nights listening to live music…
From HMV NBT - Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves of Destiny, Kyla La Grange, and Olfar
Olfar opened the night – playing without their backing band The Feral Pets – as a duet they gently warmed up the venue with a set that was more folky than their current album – available for the recession busting price of £1 from – great value – especially as you can listen before you commit to the download… It was a true duet – each member contributed to a great vocals to the opening of the NBT series…
The pace was then picked up by Kyla La Grange, cramming her backing band on to the ridiculously small stage. They then filled the small venue with a large sound – yet another slight British female vocalist with a surprisingly large voice. The highlight of the set, for me, was when Kyla forwent her guitar and let her vocals drive Vampire’s Smile. The set could do with the addition of a couple of more upbeat tracks as the theme is generally down beat – possibly a cover or two I’m sure Kyla’s voice would do the authors proud.
The set change before Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves of Destiny could make the small stage their own had me trying to think of a “how many people does it take to” joke that was appropriate! I always look forward to bands that diverge from the standard – two or three guitars, keys and a drummer – the Hooves brought to the musical sound stage a violin and trumpet – always good additions to the standard formula.

Taking the vocals up a couple of registers from Kyla, Beth has visual hints of Gwen Stefani and isn’t vocally dissimilar – less pop more rock. Taking technical problems in her stride – her music held its own – the jokes used as fillers while she fixed her guitar didn’t! The bands debut album launched on 6th February – one look out for…
HMV may be struggling to make a success of selling recorded music – but they can clearly select good live acts and promote them well – the venue appeared to be sold out – not something that happens easily on a freezing Thursday – especially since they themselves where providing alternatives at so many venues…
Set Lists
Beth Jeans Houghton & The Hooves of Destiny
Kyla La Grange

  • Atlas
  • Dodecahedron
  • Your Holes
  • Night Swimmer
  • Lilliput
  • Humble Digs
  • (Super Cunt)
  • Telephone
  • Return
  • STB (Medley)

  • Been Better
  • Courage
  • To Be Torn
  • Sympathy
  • Vampire Smile
  • Lambs
  • Catalyst