HILLS HAVE EYES were a last-minute addition to the Head Up! For The Spring Tour ’15 – so much that their name doesn’t even show on the ticket. This annoyed me a bit, since HHE was the one band that I wanted to see (and actually saw). I usually watch the whole show, whether I’m familiar or not with all names on the bill, which was pretty much the case – headliners included (North-American OUR LAST NIGHT and PALISADES in this case). In fact, I only knew ASH IS A ROBOT, the second band, and to say I’m not their biggest fan is quite an understatement… Plus the show started way too early on a working day (Friday), and since I didn’t have a clue about WE BLESS THIS MESS (opening act), I didn’t feel the need to ask for a favor in the office. I arrived at the venue when they were about to start their last song.
The place wasn’t as packed as it eventually would be, but there was a thick crowd of screaming kids in front of the stage. During ASH IS A ROBOT‘s gig the screams got louder and were joined by a couple of mosh circles. And then for HILLS HAVE EYES , with a fair share of people more, they simply got restless, as the Setúbal band deserves. That’s why I only have a few shady pics to share – I couldn’t get close enough for good focusing and/or angles (my apologies to Nuno, “Portugal’s sexiest drummer”, to use frontman Fábio‘s own words ). But sometimes it’s also good to put the photographer aside and be just the fan.
I’ve been criticized once or twice for writing my blog in English instead of Portuguese. But I do that for the same reason that most Portuguese bands sing in English – to reach a wider audience; it has nothing to do with rejecting my native tongue (although this new ortographic deal really pisses me off…). And because I refuse joining any “support the national underground” group, plus my crush for Sweden, I’ve also had been looked at sideways – even if I’ve been attending underground events on a regular basis for the last 20+ years. Let’s get one thing straight: I don’t give a rat’s ass where your band comes from! All I care about is the music – if it’s good, you’ll have my support, regardless of your nationality. But this doesn’t mean that watching/listening to an awesome Portuguese band won’t fill me with a special kind of feeling, because it does. And seeing all those kids react to HHE in a way that clearly shows they agree with me on the “awesome” part, it was just as gratifying. High five to the great music that my country produces!
It wasn’t the biggest Hard Club room, true, and it wasn’t even sold out, but like THE END OF GRACE-Kriss once said, it’s all about making the place feel big, no matter how small it actually is. And that night, both HILLS HAVE EYES and their fans made Hard Club Room #2 effing huge, to the sound of songs such as “Pinpoint”, “Strangers” or the brand new “The Bringer Of Rain”. It was only half an hour or so, but damn, was it worth it! I’m really sorry that I hadn’t payed them attention prior to last year (they’ve been around since 2004, I think), ’cause I’ve clearly been missing a lot of fun. Well, better late than never.
Their third album, “Antebellum”, is scheduled for release in September and Fábio said they would be back to Porto in early October to promote it. I’ll try to do better with the pics by then. And, of course, you can count on a detailed review of the album.