The Sherlocks @ The Empire, Middlesbrough

The Sherlocks just keep getting better


This will be a relatively short review as there’s little more I can say about The Sherlocks.  This was my 5th time seeing them in the last 18 months and they’ve got better each time (Ku Bar, O2 Academy 2, Glastonbury, Newcastle University).  I’m pretty certain this was the largest crowd yet and everyone seemed to love every second of this gig.

I went with my brother, Mike, to see this one as the venue was on his home turf.  When we arrived at the venue at about 7.15pm, it was cold and wet and there was a large queue outside.  We decided to go for a beer.  Unfortunately, as it turned out later, this meant we missed the first support act, Neon Waltz.  Never mind, we caught Oddity Road who were good.  They had a similar sound to The Sherlocks and hail from Sheffield.

The Sherlocks came on stage at about 9.15pm and played through the entirety of their debut album, Live For The Moment.  Lead singer, Kiaran Crook, seems to be finding new ways to get the audience involved and it resulted in a great atmosphere throughout, including a music-less sing along after the closing number, Chasing Shadows.  After reaching no. 6 in the UK charts with the album, I hope they go on to have a strong career with an even better follow-up.  Good luck to them.  They genuinely seem to love every moment of playing and that’s evident to see.

The Sherlocks Setlist The Empire, Middlesbrough, England 2018


Cattle & Cane @ Hit The Bar, Middlesbrough

A “secret gig” from a top local band. Marvellous.

Secret Acoustic Show Tonight – You Are Invited!
Hi Pledgers,First of all, we would like to say a huge thank you to everybody who pre-ordered ‘Mirrors’ ❤️ We hope you’re all enjoying it.
We couldn’t do what we do if it wasn’t for your support, so as a little thank you, we’re going to play a secret acoustic show in Middlesbrough tonight…

How very exciting!  Having not been to a secret gig before, I’ve now been to two in as many weeks (Turin Brakes last week).  This one was truly “secret”.  A little tweet was sent out from Cattle & Cane on Saturday to indicate it was coming.

This was then followed up with details from Pledge Music around lunchtime on Monday. The venue was confirmed as Hit The Bar in Middlesbrough.

I went along with my brother arriving a little before 7pm.  Cattle & Cane were on shortly after 7pm, performing an incredible acoustic set to a raptured audience of 60 or so pledgers.  I’ve seen Cattle & Cane 3 times before (at Deer Shed 6, Deer Shed 7 and The Empire), but this was something special.  An intimate venue with a crowd that were very happy to be there.

The first seven songs of the set were entirely from the new album, Mirrors.  They opened the set (after a brief pause for a siren flying passed) launching into the beautiful Love On Your Hands.  All the songs from Mirrors sounded, as expected, superb.  Tonight We Dance (Cleveland Hills) was performed off the stage amongst the crowd.  Joe played Paper Man, which apparently doesn’t get much of a live outing.  The set finished on the singalong Fool for You, before they took the briefest of pauses.  A rousing applause followed and without exiting the stage they performed another 3 tracks from their back catalogue.  The delicate start of Infant Hercules was briefly interrupted by the sweet sounds of a very loud hand dryer in the toilets, but soon resumed to perfection.  The crowd were in fine voice for this one.

My brother didn’t know much about the band beforehand, but, by the end of the night had bought the vinyl from pledge music.  The beer was great; Brewdog: Dead Pony Club Session Pale Ale, followed by a fairly tasty alcohol free equivalent Brewdog: Nanny State.

As a bonus on the night the band had just heard that the album was sitting at no. 53 in the midweek album charts.  Lets hope it stays there by Friday.  It was a privilege to be part of this night.  Thanks to the band for inviting me.

You can buy the album from Pledge Music, Amazon or iTunes or get yourself down to the marvellous Sound It Out Records in Stockton.

I managed to sneak on to the photo for this tweet.  I almost look like a band member!

My brother & I both made it on to this photo…

Cattle & Cane @ The Empire

A nice end of year Christmas gig.  Food at La Pharmacie was ok, but the service was poor.  Andrew got a lovely bit of rope amongst his pulled pork.  The waitress seemed unconcerned.

Cattle & Cane were good as we watched from an odd box stage left.

Support act: Cape Cub (decent)

Cattle & Cane. Final gig of 2016 with added rope burger & prawn linguine!