Touring the UK for the first time since covid, Halestorm’s performance at Newcastle City Hall was fantastic.
A singer, a spotlight and a piano. Not the most traditional of opening for a rock band. Lzzy Hale, the lead singer, opened the show solo, completely surprising me. It was a very intimate opening with her singing and playing the piano, it was as if she was singing just to me. It was a very powerful opening, with its focus set on international women’s which was the day before. Before playing the song for all the women, ‘Dear Daughter’, she addressed them and told them to be strong and never give up. Not only that, she also thanked the men in the crowd for being allies with women and standing up for them. As a woman it was incredibly moving, as Halestorm is the only band I’ve seen so far to address that on stage.
The rest of the band was invited on and I was expecting them to go straight into playing rock. To my surprise, they didn’t. The first part of the show was an acoustic set. Many of their well known songs were stripped of their heavy guitar sounds and thrashing drums. However, it made for a completely unique set. The way they changed their music to fit the more intimate style of show was phenomenal. I came out at the end thinking how amazing those versions were.
But what made it really special was their tribute to Newcastle. Lzzy said that it was their plan to pay tribute to every location in the UK by covering a song by a rock musician from the area. For Newcastle we got a tribute to Brian Johnson from AC/DC with their cover of ‘You Shook Me All Night Long’. You could see how much Halestorm were enjoying it just by the effort they put in to cover a different song for every location.
The whole gig wasn’t just acoustic, about an hour in, they plugged in all the electric instruments. Compared to the unique start, the second set didn’t disappoint. Their selection of songs was fantastic, bringing a mix of old and new material that everyone could enjoy.
One thing I liked was that the whole gig wasn’t just centred on Lzzy, the whole band got a chance to be the focus. Arejay Hale on drums got a whole drum solo to go wild in and even brought out some massive drumsticks to play with. Joe Hottinger on lead guitar got many a guitar solo and even Josh Smith on bass got his own solo.
Overall, what a phenomenal evening it was and certainly a night to remember.
To find out more about the upcoming tour performances check Halestorm’s website.
Keira is an A-Level student and aspiring journalist for Radio Gateshead, circus performer and musician.
Interests: Writing, expressing things creatively, and writing podcasts.