Dry The River + Arcane Roots + Goodnight Lenin, HMV Institute Library, Birmingham 30/10/12

Goodnight Lenin
Local lads Goodnight Lenin kick off tonight’s show in the HMV Library. The room is already filled and the band seem in good spirits as they power through their opening slot including their new single ‘A Cautionary Tale’ released this week by Static Caravan Recordings. The band are a tight set up with great harmonies and have a well structured set list which shows off their brilliant sound while being able to keep new listeners engaged. It’s a fantastic start to the night and the response from the crowd reflects the impression they’ve made. Finishing their set with an announcement of their upcoming Birmingham Cathedral show this December, it’s been a good night for the band.
Arcane Roots
Arcane Roots are the tour support and the Surrey based 3 piece completely shock the crowd as their sound is a stark contrast from that of Goodnight Lenin but are getting rave reviews from press across the country. Andrew Groves wows the crowd with his phenomanal vocal range and it’s easy to see why Dry the River have selected them to support on the tour as they give 100% to every show, the band later cites Arcane Roots as one of their favourite bands. Their standout tracks of the evening are their well received single ‘You Are’ which sounds like it could easily have come out of Biffy Clyro’s catalogue and their new single ‘Resolve’ which is available on free download showing exactly what they’re about, great guitar based rock and a highly energetic performance. Although they may seem a peculiar choice of support, this does not excuse the proportion of the crowd not willing to positively participate with them and it’s disappointing to see a close minded approach from a minority of the audience. Tonight they’ve put everything into their set but will go away partly disappointed, this is reflected when they announce “We’ll be at the merch stand in 10 minutes if you want to chat to us, if not goodbye” this isn’t something said when a band feels good vibes from their audience. I just hope they won’t take this as a set back but I’m sure Arcane Roots will continue to go from strength to strength and it won’t be too long before they’re back in Birmingham.
Dry the River
Dry the River appear on stage just after 9.30 and the London based 5 piece kick into ‘Shield Your Eyes’. The band’s appearance is much talked about as on first impressions you would never expect the sound they produce. They have the appearance of a hardcore band however looks can be deceiving with incredible harmonies and voices of angels, Dry the River blow the crowd away with tracks from their debut album Shallow Bed. First single ‘New Ceremony’ goes down a storm with the crowd showing their delight from the first note being struck and this is followed by a heart-warming rendition of the first song the band wrote together, ‘History Book’. There’s something charming about the guys with their great crowd interaction and the audience feel appreciated with the band talking about their rise in popularity since their previous visit to Birmingham. Dry the River have an energetic on-stage presence and have a sound in which they feel entirely confident. Each track has been carefully crafted and their finale ‘Lion’s Den’ provides a spectacular finish to their set being aided by the use of strobe lighting. Although they’re not finished there, a special unplugged rendition of “Shaker Hymns” in the heart of the crowd caps the end of a phenomenal night with everyone scurrying to witness it first hand. Everyone has thoroughly enjoyed the evening and Dry the River have shown exactly why they’ve got people talking.
Photographs by Jonathan Morgan.
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