Live Review: Hands Off Gretel @ Fulford Arms, York

Support: Witch Of The East, My Wonderful Daze, As Sirens Fall

Date: 10/07/19

Rising Alternative Grunge Rockers Hands Off Gretel provide a great time on a Sold Out show for everyone. With the genre always in evolution, every act on the evening provides a look into the future where it shows that this is what is needed.

Hands Off Gretel are just about done with things in the UK but the year isn’t over yet as they look to the back end of the year as they’re gearing up for an EU tour at the beginning of October. With a dark punk vibe to get things going in small rooms up and down the country for the ‘I Want The World’ headlining record tour, I doubt it’ll be long before they’re in larger rooms with a few moshpits to match.

First ones on the bill are Witch Of The East, a dark horror-themed duo who provided the senses and a great time, playing to the masses who show they deserved t be back. With them playing a trick on the senses, they play off each other’s strengths where the chunky riff work and psychedelic drumming shows they’re a band to be reckoned with on the touring circuits.

Moving into the harder territory were York’s very own My Wonderful Daze. Energetic, loud and spooky, there wasn’t anything I didn’t enjoy about this band, except for one thing, the vocals. At times there were some bad vocals from vocalist Flowers but most of the time everything sounded absolutely bang on where their sounds were almost animalistic and if this is any indication of their potential, then their energy was simply put: amazing.

It’s only a while before the flamboyant and infectious As Sirens Fall take up the reigns on the stage and you know that band you really love but can’t wait to see again and again because they’re just so damn entertaining on stage? This is As Sirens Fall. It might be their choice of clothing for the evening, their rhythmic pulses or their chemistry on stage but you just ask the question after and after, when are they coming back? Their lunging into the sub-genre they are could birth something almost new in a time when music is at its peak. If you’ll make one discovery today, go check them out but be careful, you might become mesmerised as I’ve been.

Before I go into Hands Off Gretel, their vocalist Lauren posted a statement via Facebook a few days prior addressing Sexism on the scene, something which As Sirens Fall did address as well, it’s played so much support and its a topic I think just goes completely unnoticed and something that’s just talked about much less. In actual reality, it needs to be addressed more, there’s no place for it in the scene and anyone who says there isn’t a problem, then fuck you. You’re the fucking problem!

Also, if you’re confused as to why Lauren and Becky look like they have fake moustaches and that, they decided to perform in York as guys to highlight ti address sexism.

I’ll link a few Facebook posts from HOG (Hands Off Gretel) so you can take a look at the posts.


So HOG’s set. It’s not only emotional but heartwarming to see that this band are powering through no matter what obstacles either their individual members or the band as a whole are going through. If anything Lauren’s posts are only highlighting how strong of a band the band and a genre as a whole are to say fuck this misogyny because The Fulford Arms, York had a room full of people who were willing to back themselves.

The knock out some absolutely great tracks during their set, with the crowd just wanting more of their energy while vocalist Lauren is just encouraging more and more. It’s tracks such as S.A.S.S And Be Mine which offer a little more of a bite into their set which livens things up, where everyone wants to be at the front by that point.

Especially with ‘Freaks Like Us’ and ‘Kiss My Girl’, I’ve not been in a room that’s had as much fun in a while. Hands Off Gretel have a growing congregation to their following and the room will keep on filling up until you’re sucked in as well.

Rating: 8/10

Music Video Roundup 12/07/19

It’s 4PM on a Friday! This means it’s time for the music video roundup. If you’re new to either the blog or these music video roundup posts, this is how it works. Every week, I watch some of the best recently released music videos and compile them into a list for everyone’s viewing pleasure. They’re span across all the different genres, so expect something different for most of the tracks. The first band on today’s roundup are the sharp dressed Sweedish rockers Royal Republic with ‘Like A Lover’.

On the track, the band explained how the video almost didn’t happen due to a technical issue.

“The video was shot in Berlin but the footage was almost completely lost due to a technical malfunction. However, through the miracle of technically skilled people (and money), we were able to salvage much of the footage. Thanks to the amazing dancers. Our friend and constant director Leo Åkesson and all the crew who worked tirelessly through the entire night to make this video happen. While the song is a little bit of a departure for us musically, somehow it always felt very natural to us. We hope it does for you too.”


Moving to some Welsh Hardcore for the next band, Brutality Will Prevail have released a video to accompany the band’s new single ‘Misery Sequence’ which is the title track from their upcoming sixth record.


The currently touring Yorkshire Post-Grungers Hands Off Gretel have a new video for us so if you’re seeing them soon, you’re in for a treat. Oh also, the video was directed by none other than the band’s frontwoman, Lauren Tate! Check out ‘Freaks Like Us’ below.


Heading straight over to the metalcore troupe Spritibox, the band have released ‘Bleach Bath’, the fifth and final cut to complete their very band new ‘Singles Collection’ EP.

The video sees vocalist Courtney LaPlante as different characters, struggling to sever ties with a sociopath.

“We have all had a toxic person enter our lives who bring out our weakness, our paranoia, and our low self-esteem. These people extract the worst in us, and we have to confront these facets of ourselves whether we want to or not.

“‘Bleach Bath’ is the final chapter from our collection of singles we started releasing towards the end of 2018. We saved this one for last for a reason: we believe it represents the balancing act we strive to perform between beautiful and hideous. Instrumentally there is an uncomfortable tension that builds throughout the song that we have enhanced with strange EVP noises building in the background.”


Heading straight to Atlanta for this next pick in this weeks list, we have the ex-issues vocalist Michael Bohn on drums as his latest project Wildheart has released a brand new track, ‘Seeing It Through’.

This is the third single by the band so far which follows on from ‘Lonely’ and ‘Animal’, which were both released earlier this year.


How about a cinematic story for the next video or the continuation of one? We have from the record ‘Attention Attention’ which is Shinedown’s latest full-length effort, the next track… ‘Monsters’.


How about a new band with an obscure name you’ve probably next heard of? Mannequin Pussy has a brand new video for ‘Cream’, a new track from their upcoming third record ‘Patience’. Spoiler alert, it’s wall to wall horror tropes.


Next up in what might be the most fun video of the year we have The Regrettes. They’ve had a pretty stellar year opening for Twenty One Pilots as well as announcing their new record where the first taste of the record in ‘I Dare You’ can be viewed below.


And I have two amazing bands for the last two videos now. Penultimately we have Sum 41. They’ve just wrapped up a short UK tour in support of their upcoming seventh record, ‘Order In Decline’ which will be released 19th July 2019 via Hopeless Records as well as releasing the latest and great cut from the said record in the form of ‘Never There’.


Lastly today, we have the incredible Set It Off. It’s a few months since the band hit up UK venues and it’s a few months until the band come back but now, the band have a fan favourite video for us all to enjoy until then in the form of ‘Hourglass’ and is the latest single off their record, ‘Midnight’.

And that’s it for another week of music video roundup. Don’t forget to check back next week at 4PM sharp for another countdown of ten of the best recent music videos to feast your eyes upon. There’s also new posts every day on the Almost anything Media so be sure to check out anything that might catch your eye.

Lauren Tate (Hands Off Gretel) Writes Open Letter To Men Who Come To Her Shows

Hands Off Gretel are one of the dammed best things happening in the UK at the moment, and they don’t take crap from anyone. They’re a female fronted part of the Riot Girl movement but there have been a few things happening at their shows which have had vocalist/guitarist Lauren Tate and Bassist Becky Baldwin speaking up when they’ve been disrespected by predatory men.

Speaking of the situations via a post on Facebook, Lauren wrote:

“Dear guys that come to my shows. Please stop kissing my cheek. Please stop sexualising myself and my bass player. Please let girls stand at the front more. Please be more aware that I really don’t want to be touched or told I am sexy. I am a MUSICIAN and I get messages and comments all day from men about myself and my female bass player being sexy or eye candy or some bullshit and it honestly kills my soul and makes my eyes roll into the dirt. I’ve seen ‘band’ posters cropped with just myself and Becky in them used to promote shows! Can you imagine how it feels to be the guys? It’s shite! SOOOO

To all the guys that respect personal space, genuinely love my band for my music and let young girls stand up at the front I really really thank you. You have no idea how much it means to myself and many female musicians when we are valued for our skills and seen as equal to the guys in bands on the same bill. Please note that a lot of girls stand politely and smile when they’re skin is crawling in so many situations it’s mental.

We just want to be valued and respected. AND WE REALLY REALLY NEVER EVER EVEREVER WANT TO BE KISSED or touched all over believe me! … In this photo here I’m locking eyes with the girls I requested come forward in the crowd. I’m holding the guitar that I wrote every song on for the new album, the guitar a guy told me after the show to ‘put down and stop playing’!!! See… us women are fierce. I’ve heard so many girls in other bands talking about these issues with men at shows and how we tackle them. It’s starts with the good guys. Look out for the girls in the crowd. If you see someone being a dick or a general creep… Call them out. Make them aware. We need more amazing guys like you in the world to stop these shitty men ruining it all for everyone. Massive respect to all those guys that do this… gigs should be for everyone to be themselves and have fun. I shouldn’t be worrying about anything while I’m up there on the mic playing my music for my fans #handsoffgretel #discuss #talk #girlband#girlstothefront #feminism #equality#respect#laurentate #femalemusician #rant

I do hate seeing posts such as this and reading about stories that have had female musicians feel like Lauren and Becky have had. When they’re playing sets, they shouldn’t have to worry about anything such as unwanted advances. Men, just think before you do something. If you’re going to be like that, don’t turn up to a show because there’ll be a lot of fans who don’t want you there if your behaviour’s going to be bullsh**.

Music Videos 19/10/18

Hello everybody! It’s that time of the week again, Friday. It’s every Friday I release a list of the ten best recent music videos from the Rock genre so I can give it to you, my followers and hopefully discover someone new! Kicking things off this week’s list is metal trio Spiritbox, who’ve returned with another fantastic single, ‘Electric Cross’.


Moving to someone I know you probably won’t have heard of is Yorkshire group Hands Off Gretel as they bring the S.A.S.S in their new music video where they take over a hotel room for themselves! I should mention it was directed and edited by their vocalist Lauren Tate as well!


Next up are some personal favourites of my own, Chapter And Verse. It’s a good release, following on from ‘A Devil In Blue’ and ‘Magazines’. but frontman Josh Carter has said the following on the track: ‘Ink’ is about feeling disillusioned with adulthood and the dangers that lie in obsessing over self-improvement. The song is unlike anything we’ve done before and we’ve been really embracing the evolution of what we do. Chapter And Verse have become a vessel for us to properly embrace life and for us, this song serves as a reminder that focusing only on how to be happy can actually give you the opposite outcome.”


And adding another British group to this week follow is the collective, itoldyouiwouldeatyou. They’ve just released something new in the form of ‘Young American’, the latest release from their debut record, ‘Oh Dearism’.


Fueled by Ramen artist Grandson has shared a new video for ‘6:00″, taken from his debut release, a modern tragedy vol.1. The video was released in conjunction with Campaign Zero, an Organisation dedicated to eradicating police violence in America.


Time for a return. this is in the form of slam metallers Arcania as they have reunited and released a brand new track, ‘Exterminate The Liberated’. It’s off their soon to be released EP, ‘Tyrannical Hierarchy: Vol.1.


Something new from some legends right now. We all need them and this is from the legendary group The Smashing Pumpkins. Things get a little freaky.


And we’re keeping going with some pretty good releases at the moment. The next video comes from the four-piece rock group, Dead Friends. Vocalist Austin Radford has shared:

“I think subconsciously people feel like we need our lives to be defined by something comprehensible – anything from political or religious affiliation to a job or a favourite sports team. ‘Torches’ is about clinging too closely to those life-defining elements, and the devastating realization that you’re not a complete person without them.”


And for the second to last video, something just a little more cinematic as we get toward the end of this weeks list. This can only be Underoath’s newest video for ‘ihateit’.


And this week I certainly have saved the best for last. Bullet For My Valentine recently dropped the video for ‘Not Dead Yet’ a video which was shot following Summersonic earlier this year in Japan.


And that’s it for another round of music videos this week. Be sure to check out next weeks post of the ten latest and greatest music videos of the week.