Live Review: Ferocious Dog / The Cloverhearts – Nightrain, Bradford 24.05.2024

So I was venturing out to territory unknown for an evening of punk courtesy of the Cloverhearts and the awesome Ferocious Dog at the infamous Nightrain in Bradford, and after my journey had been thwarted by a colossal amount of road closures and road works, I eventually made my way into the venue to be met by a cacophony of battle vests and faded tour shorts as well as a myriad of generations who had all embarked on the journey to the mighty Bradford for one thing, and that was an evening of high energy feel good tunes.

Starting the evening off were the Celtic Punks, The Cloverhearts, and they wasted no time exuding the energy with Cooper stalking every inch of the adequate Nightrain stage in order to ply his trade to every single soul in the venue tonight. The set length was healthy enough and included bounce factor inducing anthems such as ‘Always Monday’ and ‘Junky’ while my personal highlight of the set, ‘You’ve Got A Friend’, saw the frontman select random individuals from the crowd to introduce to each other before the controlled chaos erupted. The set was impressive for a support slot, and the elongated time allowed the band the time to truly impress the gathered masses. from the response, which was served back towards the stage, I’m sure the Antipodean punks made swathes of new friends from West Yorkshire tonight. Take a bow, gentleman; you truly deserve it.

The stage was then dressed, and with a brief turnaround, it was time for some Folk Punk courtesy of the fantastic Ferocious Dog. Opening with ‘Merthyr Rising’ from the new album, ‘Kleptocracy’, the band hit the ground running. The vocals from Bonsall were passionate and commanding, while the fretwork up and down his six strings was truly mesmerising. The set was pretty much built around the new offering and played almost every track off the new spawn whilst being pitted with the odd carefully selected track from their illustrious back catalogue.

Wood was an ever-present animated and joyful presence on the front line, while Burney was his usual enigmatic self, caressing and manipulating the smaller strings with obvious passion and pride. ‘The Punk Police’ and ‘Hell Hounds’ were colossal and energetic while new offerings ‘Moby Dick’ and Darker Side Of Town’ were absolute goliaths and fitted straight into the set as if they had been stalwarts of the Ferocious Dog live scene for absolute years.

As the set signed off with the classic ‘Slow Motion Suicide’ and then the smile-inducing ‘Nellie The Elephant,’ you couldn’t help but reflect that the way Ferocious Dog are growing and growing, it may be the last time we get to spend an evening with them in a venue this size. Surely, they are destined for bigger and bigger stages to cope with their astronomical uprising.

A blinder of an evening had been enjoyed by one and all, and I’m pretty safe in saying that a Ferocious Dog gig simply never disappoints.   

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