Jaw dropping rock ...and awe!

Five seconds into a blistering set at Manchester’s Roadhouse one thing is crystal clear, Texas rockers Young Heart Attack have been away too long! We should probably be thankful that they are back at all after they went their separate ways a couple of years ago. Tonight they return with renewed vigour and conviction and deliver the kind of performance that reminds us just why we sat up & took notice of them in the first place.

The set list is made up of a mix of older tracks and a healthy dose from the new album (‘Rock and Awe’), kicking off with the excellent ‘Mouthful of Love’. YHA have the strut and swagger of AC/DC and the Stones but speeded up and with one important added extra - the presence of the thoroughly engaging Jennifer Stephens. Taking on much more of a full vocal role on the new album she is very much to the fore and her soaring, strong vocals really give an extra boost to the bands hard edged rock & roll. The older songs sound as good as they always have, most notably ‘Sick of Doing Time’ and the blistering ‘Tommy Shots’. The whole band seem to relish the opportunity to be back on these shores and it’s a performance just bristling with raw energy.

Of the newer tracks aired it’s the title track from the album ‘Rock and Awe’ that steals the show, it just never lets up from start to finish and has the kind of catchy melody and chorus that is so obviously lacking from many better known radio friendly bands. The crowd is decent, although there isn’t much movement despite the healthy number in attendance and even the rousing set closer ‘To The Teeth’ fails to get them going. That aside though it’s been a pretty stunning return for YHA, Frenchie’s guitar work is fast and frenetic and whilst the vocals of Chris Hodge are an acquired taste at times, tonight it all just comes together in a glorious cacophony.