Sometimes you know that you are witnessing something special. Empyre playing in a pub garden in their hometown is one of those moments. The more I see and hear of this band the more convinced I am that they will become arena fillers in the not too distant future.
This extremely well organised, socially distanced garden gig saw Empyre running through an electric set that comprised mostly of tracks from their Self Aware album but also threw in some excellent brand new songs and a David Guetta cover in Titanium.
This very tight set was underpinned by the driving bass and drums of Grant Hockley and Elliot Bale, who create a sometimes brooding and atmospheric backdrop to the sharp and precise guitar work of Did Coles and the instantly recognisable vocals of Henrik Steenholdt, whether he is delivering them with delicacy, such as on The Only Way Out or in soaring fashion on Something Remains.
This is a band of stunningly professional musicians who are at home with an audience, indeed they are what you see on stage, a really nice bunch of guys, always happy to talk with their fans both before and after the gig. The music is where they really talk, however, and from start to finish they demonstrated that this music, with the right exposure, could take them all the way to those arenas I spoke of earlier.
As with lot of things in the music business it will depend on a couple of things. Firstly the quality of that important 2nd. album (I know that they have recently released The Other Side which shows the Self Aware songs in a different light) and the new material it contains, although the new songs seem to reach the heights of Self Aware, and being in the right place at the right time with the right people listening.
If you haven’t heard them give them a listen and when (not if) you like what you hear shout about it to everyone you know, These boys deserve to be big time and I will be doing everything I can to help them along that road to success. Perhaps one day when I’m watching at Wembley Arena or the O2 (with an Access All Areas pass boys…..hint, hint) I will be able to tell people all about the day I saw them play in a garden in Northampton. Bring it on!!
Henrik Steenholdt – Vocals and Guitar
Did Coles – Lead Guitar and Vocals
Grant Hockley – Bass
Elliot Bale – Drums
Words by Tony Davis
Pictures by Paul Eason (except setlist by Tony Davis)