Fall is the season for kick-ass tours. Included in that is the Face to Face tour, with Hands Like Houses and Our Last Night co-headlining.
After reviewing “Dissonants” prior to its release in February, I instantly became hooked on Australia-grown band Hands Like Houses. I obviously wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity to see them when they brought their tour to Union Transfer Nov. 20.
A popular topic in the music industry is that music today is practically genreless, where everything is just a blend of other genres. Hands Like Houses is no exception. Before seeing them live, I had an idea of what the show would be but boy, was I not expecting the high energy rock show that I was about to endure.
With openers including metal bands Out Came the Wolves and The Color Morale, the crowd ranged from metalheads, to rocker chicks, to your atypical teen girl.
It was a packed house from the barrier, that simply was there to allow crowd-surfers a place to land that wasn’t on stage, to the back, including the bar and upper levels of Union Transfer.
Hands Like Houses stormed onto the stage opening up with their most popular song off “Dissonants,” “I Am.” Immediately after, vocalist Trenton Woodley stopped to inform the crowd that despite all efforts his voice was nearly gone.
Being that he is used to the warm weather down south in Australia, he was not having it with the cold Philadelphia fall nights. Nevertheless, he still put on a killer performance.
“Colourblind” followed his speech, and being one of the punchier songs, crowd surfer after crowd surfer flew up over the barrier during the chorus. “Glasshouse” was up next and, as one of my personal favorites, it was incredible to hear live.
With all the doubt that any artist sounds as good live as they do on a recording. Hands Like Houses are clear cut proof that talented bands still exist.
Lyrically, their next song “Division Symbols” was their best. Woodley touched on the fact that as a band, they don’t write for the fans. They write to help themselves feel better, and it’s incredible how a song about a personal struggle can connect them to their fans.
They kicked it back up to a heavier rock show with “Motion Sickness.” Then, Hands Like Houses took a trip back to their sophomore album with “No Parallels, “A Tale of Outer Suburbia,” and “Introduced Species.”
With Woodley’s voice basically gone, they cut the finale to just one song, “Introduced Species.” However, before that, they performed what I will argue is the best song off of “Dissonants.”
“New Romantics” showcases the talent of each individual in the band, with vocals and bass being the main part of the song. After months of waiting, I was not one bit disappointed by the live performance of “New Romantics.”
Overall, their mature sound and talent translated into their on-stage performance. With the high energy of a metal band and the talent of the rock bands of the earlier days, Hands Like Houses is definitely one to keep your eyes on.
Their unique combination of electronic, rock, alternative, and punk provide the opportunity for everyone to find a song to enjoy. I have nothing bad to say about Hands Like Houses and I cannot recommend them enough.