Gig reviewsGinger WildheartThe Wildhearts

Ginger and The Wildhearts Light Up Shepherds Bush Empire with a Career-Spanning Set

We love being at Shepherds Bush Empire and this evening promised an amazing atmosphere and awesome rock music brought by the fantastic Wildhearts.

Before The Ginger and Co. graced the Shepherds Bush stage we were treated to two brilliant support bands. First up for the growing and excited crowd were Asomvel who exuded pure (some might say too pure) Motörhead energy – right down to their Lemmy – like outfits. Having said that, they do have a sound of their own. The bass heavy rock set really set the tone for a great evening and left us excited for what was to come.

A trio of familiar faces to Rock News was next on stage in the form of Florence Black. The Welsh rockers brought their excellent hard hitting songs just as expected. Their new album ‘Bed Of Nails’ featured heavily in their set including the title track, ‘Warning Signs’ and a big close with their 2021 hit from their album ‘Weight Of The World’; ‘Sun and Moon’.

The Wildhearts have been an on-and-off band since 1989 when they formed in Newcastle. Their unique sound, oozing influences from the Beatles to Thrash saw them gain a dedicated following. Now, in 2024, the only remaining original member is the superbly talented and always entertaining Ginger. Along with old hand “Random” Jon Poole and new boys Ben Marsden on guitar and Pontus Snibb behind the kit, they drew a huge roar from the Empire crowd when they ambled on stage, appropriately, to the strains of ‘We’ll Meet Again’.

‘Sleepaway’ from 2021’s ‘21st Century Love Songs’ got the party started – and what a party it was! The band bounded and bounced their way through a career-defining set. We lost count of the number of times Jon Poole jumped – providing some great photo opportunities!

Ginger had promised an arena-type show, and second song ‘Diagnosis’ saw the stage erupt with confetti cannons, followed by pyro by the time we got to ‘I Wanna Go Where the People Go’. By this time the audience were going crazy, especially as crowd favourite Suckerpunch had been played just before.

The hits kept coming and the crowd kept singing as Ginger led his troops through a monumental performance.

We got some new material too, including ‘Eventually’ and ‘Hurt People Hurt People’. The new tunes went down well before ‘Chutzpah’ closed the main set.

They were back after a short break for a riotous three-song encore of ‘Greetings from Shitsville’, ‘My Baby is a Headfuck’ and ‘Caprice’.

It’s clear that no matter what line up changes The Wildhearts go through or how many hiatus’ they have, their army of fans will always be hungry to see them live – and on this form, why wouldn’t they?

Ginger and The Wildhearts Light Up Shepherds Bush Empire with a Career-Spanning Set @ RockNews @RockNewsUS

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