Hinds @ Arts Club
“Hi, we’re Hinds, and we come from a place called Madrid!” front woman Carlotta Cosials announces into the mic, hailing to the group’s Spanish heritage. The influence of the capital city’s garage rock bands and live music venues is clear during Hinds’ performances, where they expertly tap into a raw and unpolished energy.
Yet they are equally well-acquainted with the sounds overseas, citing Black Lips, Ty Segall and Mac DeMarco as some of their many inspirations. This element of lo-fi can easily be heard in the opener of their Liverpool gig, ‘Soberland’, a relatively calm beginning to a storm of a show.
Later in the night, halfway through their set, Carlotta asks the crowd if anyone knows The Clash. Their cover of the iconic punk band’s song ‘Spanish Bombs’ is a UK tour exclusive, they state, a celebration of the British rock scene. It is not their only tribute to our culture, as their very recent release British Mind delves into exactly that, in particular, the association of sunshine with happiness in a country where it is only there half the time.
It is no surprise that Hinds have such a range of influences, as their heavy touring schedule takes them all across around the world. This year alone, the four have visited the UK and Europe twice, once before in April. In total, they have performed live nearly every month in 2018, often several nights in a row. It is a wonder that Hinds have any time to record given their intense schedule. In fact, they have previously stated that their debut album, Leave Me Alone, felt rushed. Second time round, the band spent two months writing and two weeks recording, hence the title I Don’t Run.
Despite having to balance studio recording with a much heavier touring schedule than other music acts, Hinds never seem to be worn down by the understandably tiresome nature of it. Rather, they seem to relish their fast-paced lifestyle. Touring is essentially what the band do for a living, and they are practically experts, now, in the art of putting on a show.
Bringing a burst of energy to the stage of Arts Club, Carlotta and fellow vocalist Ana Perrote consistently break the barrier between performer and audience, both jumping off the stage at some point during the gig to sing into the faces of front row fans. As a member of the sound crew emerges to untangle Carlotta’s microphone lead, it seems apparent that equipment is the only thing keeping the pair tethered to the stage. Amber Grimbergen, although positioned at the back as the band’s drummer, demands as much attention for the sheer passion that is evident as she plays. Even bassist Ade Martin, more quiet and focused, is equally and charmingly engaged with her bandmates.
Hinds are undeniably skilled, yet their talent and appeal doesn’t solely (or perhaps at all) lie in their precision. They have unapologetically embraced their imperfection, prioritising authenticity and feeling over technicality. It is for this very reason that Hinds are not only great live, they are better live. Because in this arena, they are able to play and sing – and act – in the moment, exhibiting raucous, rowdy and unrestrained verve.
The quartet will never, and should never, permit people to stand still at their gigs. The catchy, boisterous songs from I Don’t Run get everyone moving (or crowd surfing), whilst fans confidently and enthusiastically shout the lyrics to their classic hits like ‘Garden’. The only thing that can stop Hinds (and their fans) is Arts Club’s unfortunately early curfew. Their deflation to this is a testament to their very genuine love of live performance, but despite it, the four exit the stage to ‘Always Look on the Bright Side of Life’, ready to conquer the next town.
I Don’t Run is available now on all streaming services.