Ellipsis and Help The Homeless present Raise the Roof
Last Wednesday 21st February was a night I won’t forget for a very long time. Ellipsis Magazine and UoL Help the Homeless society got together to present their ‘Raise the Roof’ charity gig for MerseyAid and MRANG, 2 charities that aim to aid refugees, over at Studio2 on Parr Street. With a line-up full to the brim of brilliant acts, there was classic indie bangers being played in between each act from the Sh*t Indie Disco DJ’s Nic and Sean keeping the audience going and pumping us up for the next performance.
The first band on the bill were Liverpool’s own Forrest who describe their music in their Instagram bio as ‘Sad songs by sad boys’ – the sad songs bit definitely came across in their set but personality wise they seemed like reasonably happy boys to me!
One of the first things I noticed about their music was a slight nod to the later output from The Smiths, more specifically their more melancholy introspective tunes. Lead singer Adam even had a slight hint of Morrissey in his voice (which is a compliment don’t worry Adam) but one thing I can say is his energy was definitely higher than the moody old fart that is Morrissey. Forrest, although having clearly been influenced by The Smiths, did put their own spin on it bringing a more contemporary vibe and creating something pretty special all of their own. All in all I thoroughly enjoyed their set.
Having warmed up a crowd who were by now well on their way to being happily intoxicated on the atmosphere or alcoholic beverages or both, next to grace the stage were The Adlets, hailing from Newcastle, The Adlets have described their tunes as ‘Uplifting, Dancy and Hand-Clapping’ and I definitely got that. At this point in the gig, as previously mentioned, the energy was high and everyone was really getting into it and having a good time (I guess everyone had enough time to drink their sins away and confidence was dripping from the ceiling). I myself definitely had a little bit of a boogie to the bangers of The Adlets so I can confirm that their description of themselves is 100% true.
At the half way mark we were treated with the unique sounds of local heroes, Skinner’s Lane, I may have a bias towards this band as I have seen them and reviewed them live previously and reviewed their latest single Dear Brighton, so I am already completely aware of their talent. Dear Brighton (nothing to do with the place) was indeed one of the highlights of their set and is one of those tunes you can’t help but bop along to, in fact that could be said of the band in general, as they have so much energy on stage it’s incredibly infectious making it physically impossible to stand still.
The fourth act to take to the stage was another Liverpudlian, the wonderful Gazelle. I’m not sure whether Gazelle is just a stage name or is indeed what she is called, but either way it suits her as she has the elegance and doe eyed appeal of a deer. She appeared as a vision in red – clothed in a vibrant ruby from head to toe – and I can tell you that red is definitely her colour. She brought something new to the table and brought a completely different vibe to the previous acts. Not to detract from the brilliance of the earlier sets, the feel-good, poppy sound of Gazelle was refreshing and brought out the school disco queen in my soul. I loved all of her original songs but when she performed a beautiful cover of the Spice Girls classic, Say You’ll Be There, I had something of an emotional moment and it took me right back to my ten-year-old self loving the Spice Girls and feeling like part of one big girl gang united under the banner of ‘Girl Power.’ Gazelle’s voice was just as soulful and appealing as her stage presence and I adored her set.
So who was next? In all honesty the four acts to perform already would have been enough to make a fantastic night but there was yet more brilliance to come in the form of none other than Sheffield’s own, The Seamonsters. Naomi, Lauren, Holly, Tassie, Ella and Ciara are a band of the most adorable, beautiful girls I have ever witnessed and their sound is super funky and fun. Naomi has the voice of an angel and these girls definitely know how to put on a show. If possible, the atmosphere was even more electric than at the start of the night and it was clear that these lovely girls were not going to let the energy drop. They played their banger of a new tune Max and Archie which I had a little bit of a dance to I must admit. The entire set was wonderful and magical, and The Seamonsters are definitely a band you should check out if you love strong, powerful ladies!
Closing up this incredible night were the headliners We Were Glue (who explained that they are named this as they were called Glue, but now they are not). Although it was close to midnight, the crowd were still buzzing and We Were Glue kept us all dancing. We Were Glue describe their genre on their Facebook page as ‘awful’, (it’s nice to see artists who have confidence in themselves these days… ) Hopefully it was meant to be ironic as personally I don’t think their sound was awful at all! Their upbeat indie bangers kept me going even though at this point I was beginning to flag out of utter exhaustion. Despite my aching feet their old school indie melodic guitar lines and funky driven bass had me forgetting about the pain and dancing along with the rest of the crowd!
The entire sold out night was a rip-roaring success, not only raising £708.29 for charities Merseyaid and MRANG to help refugees, but in all honesty I could not have had more fun. Chloe and Jess and everyone else involved did an amazing job and all six of the acts were incredible. The whole night was full of laughter with a wickedly vibrant atmosphere and everyone was so friendly and warm (despite the fragile men who threw an egg and me and my mates for ignoring them, they missed us but seriously?) Breakfast foods aside, I had an amazing night and can’t wait to do it all again next year!
(All photos by Ronja Hrafnkelsdóttir)
To read more about both MerseysAid and MRANG visit their websites below, along with the UOL Help The Homeless Society‘s Facebook page which you can find here!
You can find out more about all the acts that performed via the Facebook pages below!