Gig review: Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds

Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds. Picture: Neil Chapman
Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds. Picture: Neil Chapman
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“We’re Terrorvision and we’re from Bradford,” the inimitable rallying cry once again rang out across Yorkshire.

There may have been a number of factors involved in the decision to secure the Belgrave Music Hall for the warm-up gig for their impending short UK tour, but the near vicinity of the Leeds College of Building must have been a consideration. If the venue floor wasn’t designed to flex beforehand then it certainly did post emphatic gig, clouds of wall plaster collecting on the shoulders of the sell-out crowd. The after show analysis potentially the perfect exercise in structural engineering.

Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds. Picture: Neil Chapman

Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds. Picture: Neil Chapman

Twenty-five years after release of album How to Make Friends and Influence People, the band are taking the album on the road. Given their stop-start approach to reliving the years of chart bothering pop-metal, then it was perhaps hardly surprising that they sought an intimate warm-up gig to get back into their imitable groove.

Terrorvision have never been what might be classed as an ‘album band’ so playing their 1994 release from start to finish was little more than a convenient excuse to get back on the road. Celebrating the wardrobe style of the album cover through being adorned in head to toe silver, the band walked out and strode confidently into Alice What’s the Matter, Oblivion, Stop The Bus and an absolute rousing version of Discotheque Wreck, its punk influences enough to dislodge even the most substantial of foundations.

The five hits are mainly contained on side one and so the set drifted somewhat through the rest of the disc, lifted by Pretend Best Friend and Some People Say, before a quick costume change, shackles thrown off and Terrorvision doing what they do best. Pop, punk and metal met in a glorious amalgamated hour long explosion of jumping, surfing and dancing. This is their element, bassist Leigh Marklew gurning, grinning, acting out Tony Wright’s vocals, Mark Yates the consummate rock ’n’ roll guitarist, all tattoos and coolness, Wright himself exuding similar levels of energy than he did a quarter of a century ago.

Whilst it is the hits that are prominent, there are some surprises. III Wishes makes a welcome appearance as does Dog Chewed the Handle, alongside the more familiar My House and Josephine. Biggest hit Tequila felt oddly flat alongside these spikier elements but as the familiar chant of ‘whales and dolphins’ signalled encore Perseverance, Terrorvision were sent on their way around the UK, their ardent fans left exultant and enraptured by a set that injected delirium into the bloodstream.

Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds. Picture: Neil Chapman

Terrorvision at Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds. Picture: Neil Chapman

The next time they’re back in their home county will be at the Grade I listed Piece Hall in June and its nearly 250-year-old structure, ten times older than How to Make Friends. Yorkshire can only hope that its prodigal sons’ energy and exuberance don’t result in a further case study in foundation design.