Kids In Glass Houses – Farewell Tour

As the crowd slowly wanders in to The Hub, a 450 capacity club in Plymouth. There is already an exciting yet mournful mood to the atmosphere. Tonight this crowd is going to be given a show by five guys from Wales. They are a band who have created four outstanding albums that made fans all over the world want to put their headphones in and drift away to; and tonight will be the last time they play here.

Kids-in-Glass-Houses-620x348

Tonight’s support band are Save Your Breath, and while the five-piece do get the crowd ready for the night ahead of them. There just doesn’t seem to be enough of their fans here this evening. These fans just appear to be here for one reason, and prolonging that is not going to go down well.

Kids In Glass Houses have always had a thing for showmanship, such as decorating the stage with flowers when touring second album Dirt. So once Edith Piaf’s Non, Je Ne Regrette Rein begins to play over the speakers, the crowd knows that the last show they will see by this band is about to begin.

A roar of cheers greet the quintet as they walk on stage, and burst right into second album opener Artbreaker I. A track that gets the crowd moving and ready for what is to come. The cheers become deafening as the band then play arguably their most famous track Give Me What I Want, which is welcomed to a sing-a-long of the entire song. The first half of the set barely sees the band slow down or the fans stop dancing as they play song after song of classics from their records such as: The Best Is Yet To Come, Undercover Lover and Animals. Whilst also slipping in Set Me Free and Drive from their most recent album Peace that go down with more adoring screams.

Easy Tiger feels nostalgic as it takes us back to the first video we ever saw of the band back in 2008, Fisticuffs forces all of our hands into the air to pump along with lead singer Aled Phillips and Dance All Night makes us want to do just that.

Kids In Glass Houses – completed by Iain Mahanty and Joel Fisher on guitar, Philip Jenkins on drums and Andrew ‘Shay’ Sheehy on bass – announced that they would be parting ways in early 2014 much to the disappointment of their fans. The year 2008 Saw the band release their début album Smart Casual which put them on the map for one of the front-runners of the pop/punk genre, 2010 album Dirt only strengthened this position. 2012’s In Gold Blood saw the band go down a much darker route than their previous albums, it saw them introduce a more raw guitar sound whilst still keeping their catchy hooks. Although still a strong album it came under fire from their avid fans who preferred their older sound. Their 2013 offering Peace, put both of these elements together to create a record that captured the essence that the band started with and a sound that showed their growth. At least they have ended it on a high note.

kids

Tonight the band are here to entertain everyone. Not only the fans who just know the well-known singles but also the fans who have been with them from the very beginning. That is shown as Aled takes to the stage, acoustic guitar in hand to give the crowd a personal slowed-down version of Raise Hell from their first record. It is in singing this track that you really feel the fans showing how much this band means to them, and the feeling is reciprocated through the vocalist.

The second half of the set concludes the powerful Artbreaker II which sees many feet off the ground, an on-stage strobe light show and the singer walk halfway around the wall and hang from a support beam. But the night is not over.

Oh no, with a whole back catalogue full of well-known tracks, this band isn’t finished just yet. An encore ensues which sees them roar through crowd chanting songs like Young Blood (Let It Out) and Saturday. As the guys thank the fans for all the support over the past 10 years and the opening riff for Matters At All slowly rolls in, you realise that this is the last time we can dance to this band that has brought us a decade of great music.

The Slam Dunk Tour got to hear Smart Casual in its entirety, and their previous show in Cardiff got In Gold Blood in full. But tonight was special as it showcased the incredible music from all four albums that the band have created throughout their career, and thanks to shows like this, for their fans, the diamond days will never fade away.

Full set list is as follows:

Artbreaker I

Give Me What I Want

The Best Is Yet To Come

Undercover Lover

Set Me Free

Drive

Fisticuffs

Easy Tiger

Dance All Night

Animals

Diamond Days

Sunshine

Raise Hell (Aled Phillips Acoustic)

The Morning Afterlife

Hunt The Haunted

Artbreaker II

Encore:

Peace

Youngblood (Let It Out)

Saturday

Matters At All

In Gold Blood

Kids Go For Gold With Latest Album

Back in 2008 if someone asked you if you liked the band ‘Kids In Glass Houses’ you would probably look at them with a confused expression and would ask them what they were on about, because at this point they had just released their debut album ‘Smart Casual’ and hadn’t really burst themselves on to the scene of Pop/Punk, rather just walked in.

Kids In Glass Houses

Today though that name has new meaning, it defines a band that has spawned out of the Welsh city of Cardiff and have progressed to find themselves as a band throughout their three albums, and with their latest album, ‘In Gold Blood’, being a disc loaded with energy the band have definitely shown themselves worthy of being where they are today.

The album starts off with the song ‘Gold Blood’  which when listening to it seems to stretch the intro slightly to far, however once the instruments kick in joined by lead singer, Aled Phillips’, voice, the song gets off to an explosive start and binds together with a catchy chorus of Phillips’ softly screaming vocals. It is a great way to start off the album and shows the boys using their typical guitar hooks but adding powerful backing vocals aswell.

Aled Phillips

Straight away after the track, ‘Teenage Wonderland’ jumps in with Phillips telling us that “When we were young we make the mistakes that make us what we are today”, and throughout the song shows how what we do when we are/were teenagers changes the way that our life pans out. The song could however be a way of telling us how the singer doesn’t understand the youths of todays society “i’m a boy, playing a man, trying to understand a teenage wonderland.”

Throughout the album the songs change to something slightly darker, which is a side of Kids In Glass Houses which we haven’t seen before. It’s almost as though there is a good and evil element to the album. With heavy/grungier guitar riffs and darker lyrics, in songs like ‘Animals’ which shows teenagers to be as the singer puts it “young and reckless”, and tells us how we are all just animals at heart.

In Gold Blood - Album Cover

‘Black Crush’ also shows us the darker side of the album but gives us some high pitched singing from Phillips aswell for the chorus. As we get to the last song on the album, ‘A God To Many Devils’, the band send us off with a musically talented ending with the track going into a massive Guitar breakdown of low notes.

Kids In Glass Houses has been created from five members; Aled Phillips-Vocals, Iain Mahanty-Lead Guitar, Phillip Jenkins-Drums, Joel Fisher-Rythm Guitar and Andrew Sheehy-bass. The quintet released their debut album ‘Smart Casual’ in 2008 and their second album ‘Dirt’ in 2010.  It isn’t easy for a band to get big these days and especially one which is coming out of Wales as it is such a big music scene, they gave us the likes of Lostprophets, Bullet For My Valentine, Funeral For A Friend and The Blackout.

It’s hard for a band to create an album were throughout every song we get a chrorus which will be jumping off the walls of our heads all day and great instrument playing thrown in aswell, but this band appear to have done it.

They have stuck to what they know and and added some extras, in doing so have created another album which their previous fans will love and which will draw in new ones.

This album does not disappoint…

In Gold Blood is out now through Roadrunner Records

Listen to: Diamond Days, Black Crush, A God To Many Devils.

Dirt '2010'

Smart Casual '2008'