The Answer | Live Review

The Answer @ Thekla, Bristol. 24.03.15

Cormac invites the crowd to ‘get down’ with him. Literally. On the floor.

As part of their current UK tour ahead of America, Irish rockers The Answer rocked the boat at Bristol’s Thekla tonight.

Supported by The Picturebooks and Bad Touch, the short but mighty set was a heavy dose of new songs from their fifth album ‘Raise A Little Hell’, along with some old. The new single ‘Red’ - a ‘cheeky little blues rocker’ as described by bass player Micky Waters was featured three songs in, getting the crowd warmed up nicely. Lead singer Cormac Neeson does a great job of getting the crowd to join in, but you’d have a hard job to keep up with his psychedelic mad-man, mane-shaking moves; it’s his energy that is just a joy to watch. Cormac really infuses with his audience during ’Demon Eyes’, leaning in and locking his gaze with individuals. Sung with such intensity and passion it’s dripping over the front row.

Later in the set, Cormac invites the crowd to ‘get down’ with him. Literally. On the floor. He strides into the crowd like a lion stalking pray, as everyone around him lowers to the ground as one. All eyes are on him as he chants for them to follow his lead, then he slinks back towards the stage as everyone rises back to their feet as if they were the snake to his charmer.

A Bristol exclusive tonight was a beautiful acoustic version of ‘Strange Kinda Nothin’’. It’s at moments like this that Cormac’s distinctive vocal shines. Unique yet a huge nod to Robert Plant, it’s perfect for this bluesy, riff heavy, attitude-filled sound. He could sing a nursery rhyme and make it rock. The show is full of traditional classic rock values that the band exudes. The expected drum solo (James Heatley), plenty of rock pauses followed by powerful bursts of thunderous bass (Micky Waters) and a frenzy of finger to fret (Paul Mahon) with bags of electric energy. No wonder they can include David Coverdale and Jimmy Page as their fans.

They finish with an encore of ‘Nowhere Freeway’ to which the crowd knows every word. There’s a feeling of unadulterated warm fuzziness in the air as they know as well as the band that this is the song they all heard on a rock radio station and thought – ‘wow, who are these guys?!’ Well now you know The Answer.

Tonight was a showcase of honed talent and mutual respect blended expertly to create contemporary, solid rock music. An unmissable live experience and an absolute pleasure to watch.

Watch ‘Nowhere Freeway’ right here:

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