Gig review: Turin Brakes at Unity Hall, Wakefield

Turin Brakes at Unity Hall, Wakefield. Picture: Anthony Longstaff
Turin Brakes at Unity Hall, Wakefield. Picture: Anthony Longstaff
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Widely hailed as one of the most prolific acoustic duos this country has produced, Olly Knights and Gale Paridjanian, better known as Turin Brakes are in town headlining at the newly opened Unity Hall.

Accompanied by drummer, Rob Allum and bassist, Eddie Myer, Turin Brakes are a very welcome gig booking to a city which fames its self on its cult band status.

Long time friends Gale and Olly have a rich plethora of folk/blues/pop tunes in their catalogue stretching back some 15 years unusually with little chart success but with a great international acclaim.

For me personally their first album, Optimist, has been a very influential piece of music, introducing me to other possibilities in music from the usual metal/rock which pierced my young ears.

Having seem them numerous times in many different venues, Turin Brakes have never once failed to disappoint me even with the direst of sound systems or technical problems that may have been encountered.

Gale Paridjanian’s technical playing ability is massively underrated when being considered against many main stream guitarists who’ve encountered much more commercial success. It seems a tad unfair that guys like Paridjanian should be under the radar when these comparisons are brought out.

Following a superb performance from local singer/songwriter Jade Helliwell, Turin Brakes arrive on stage and engage a couple of newer songs to a baited audience. Olly Knight’s voice caresses the West Yorkshire gathering with a blanket of reminiscence and nostalgia, tenderly leading you through a field of happiness with a set list which is charming. Unity Hall’s acoustics hold their sound well, with a old whiskey hall ambiance. There is some good banter with the crowd especially encouraging them for a rapturous encore.

It’s been a rollercoaster gig, full of emotion, sentimentality and an element of romance. For a band of their relative youth it’s a great achievement to have.

Gig date: November 14

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