Live review

HotWax bring searing energy to the second half of DIY’s Now & Next Tour 2024

10th April 2024

The punk outfit are joined by Aziya and Duvet as they unfurl their blistering riffs in the centre of Manchester.

Situated just off Oxford Road, The Deaf Institute is somewhat of a hidden gem in the Manchester music scene. While previous nights have hosted the likes of Metronomy and The Last Dinner Party, most recently it’s seen the second run of DIY’s 2024 Now & Next Tour take over.

First up, Mancunian five-piece Duvet are on hand to kick off the evening. Unlike the initial impression that their name may give, the band’s visceral, fervid delivery arrives at full throttle. Having initially dabbled in hazy dream-pop, their shift towards a boisterous, hard-edged post-punk sound is quickly established, and makes for a vehement introduction to the local noisemakers.

Cued by a pre-emptive blast from the smoke machine, Aziya is next to take to the stage. Blending twanging electric guitar lines, intermittent drum-pad beats, and powerhouse vocals, the Hackney-born artist affirms her status as a polymath. In between entrancing the crowd with offerings ranging from the angsty psych-rock of ‘chain’ to the ambient lo-fi of ‘girl meets world’, she fills her set with moments of light-hearted commentary. “We had a conversation about how small the toilets are…, but I like it here!”, she laughs, before finishing her set with 2021 debut ‘Slip!’.

HotWax, The Deaf Institute, Manchester

With the rambunctious atmosphere growing, the time has come for tonight’s headliners to make an appearance. Arriving just ahead of a jam-packed festival season, Hastings’ own HotWax cause an immediate stir. Led by Tallulah Sim-Savage’s shout-sing vocals, the set brims with frenetic energy. A whirlwind journey through their emphatic discography so far, it places fan favourites ‘Phone Machine’ and ‘Treasure’ alongside unreleased cuts.

Among the seething basslines, crashing percussion, and cutting riffs (the latter of which is the result of countless guitar changes), softer moments are weaved in too. “I recognise a lot of you from the last time we were in Manchester, so it’s nice to see you again!” bassist Lola Sam exclaims, while addressing the frenzied crowd. Closing with latest single ‘Rip It Out’, the trio bring their set to a climactic finale – one that elicits a buzz that remains even after they step off stage.

HotWax, The Deaf Institute, Manchester HotWax, The Deaf Institute, Manchester HotWax, The Deaf Institute, Manchester HotWax, The Deaf Institute, Manchester HotWax, The Deaf Institute, Manchester

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