Live Review: Terrorvision / The Bar Stool Preachers – St Georges Hall, Bradford 03.11.2023

It is always a party when Terrorvision come to town, and the prospect of them playing in their hometown of Bradford, in an iconic venue that is St Georges Hall, only added to the excitement in the build up to this gig.

As I approached the decadent and majestic building, the atmosphere of elation and anticipation was tangible and palpable from each and every soul that stepped foot inside the legendary walls, and plush carpeted floors, of the West Yorkshire renowned and celebrated theatre. I soon found myself standing in the main hall and I couldn’t help but gaze up with sheer delight at the imposing seating which decorated the sides and back of the hall, my attention frequently being dissected and distracted by the faces of those who followed after me, each and every one furnishing an endearing smile which had ignited as soon as they had caught a glimpse of the revamped venue, obviously bringing back memories for many who had frequented the venue many many years ago, a truly humbling and warmth evoking spectacle.

As the lights dimmed and The Bar Stool Preachers entered the fray, the venue was seen to be snugly full in anticipation for these energetic rock advocates. The opening chords and riffs soon induced a floor which bounced and swayed in perfect time to the tunes that resonated from the cavernous St Georges Hall stage. The set was disappointingly short yet every fraction of the band seemed to pour their entire heart and soul into every lyric, every strum, every beat and every jump, seemingly wanting to charm as many of those in attendance to either become newfound Preacher friends, or just to be reacquainted with old friends who already know how good these rockers actually are.

As the set closed out with the ska-tinged rock anthem ‘Barstool Preacher’ the whole venue was moving, swaying and swinging in perfect harmony with every note cascading down from the speaker stacks, a true pictural and audible example of how to deliver the perfect set with limited time, a genuine nod to the fact that The Bar Stool Preachers had made more than just a handful of new friends tonight. In fact, I would go as far to suspect that the whole god damn venue would probably be checking their diaries for when this lot are next in town, and simply working out logistics so that they can grab themselves a ticket ASAP.  

The venue was now packed to the rafters, every available inch of floor space was occupied, every swanky seat and balcony spot was engaged and every shirt charting the entire Terrorvision history was adorned on torsos throughout the venue, ladies and gentlemen, it was time to lose your minds and let loose for a couple of hours of pure unadulterated fun courtesy of Bradfords very own Terrorvision.

‘Discotheque Wreck’ hit us like a friggin freight train, the chosen stage attire pierced our retinas like projectile spears and the aural projections were phenomenal with Tony et al delivering a feel good and celebratory affair from the off. Tony was his usual pogoing and unrelenting energy personified, turning it up a notch in the anthemic ‘Alice What’s The Matter’ and the huge ‘Problem Solved’ while Mark rocked his wing with his almost trademark coolness and sophistication, pretty much teetering on the verge of replicating The Fonz he exuded so much swagger.

The opposing wing was conquered, as per script, by the ever reliable and thicker stringed orchestrator Leigh, who absolutely stood victorious to every bass line throughout the whole of the extensive set tonight. ‘American TV’ was absolutely battering, ‘Celebrity Hit List’ saw the crowd turn it up a notch and become louder than the PA system itself at times while ‘Some People Say’ was beautiful and emotive throughout. As the majority of the set became a recent memory we dived headfirst into the last quarter of the evening and what a quarter it was, it was pure, undiluted and truly mesmeric anthem after anthem, one after the other. ‘Pretend Best Friend’, ‘My House’, ‘Middleman’, ‘Oblivion’, ‘Josephine’ and ‘D’Ya Wanna Go Faster’, absolutely sublime, inspiring and transcendent from start to finish.

After a brief respite the band returned to the stage and brought with them ‘This Drinking Will Kill Me’ and the absolutely gigantic and titanic ‘Perseverance’ which then prompted to trigger everybody’s dreaded point in a gig, the feared fond farewell, although this was executed with passion, dignity and overflowing emotion from every single person in attendance, on and off stage.

The lights of the huge ‘TV’ sign hanging behind the drum kit then faded out in unison with the house lights reappearing, which then cued the venue doors to be flung open and a line to be drawn under the revelry of this glorious Friday evening. Friends bid a fond farewell to one another, and another blinding event could be chalked up in the history books courtesy of the one and only, the unfaltering and unwavering, the simply perfect, Terrorvision.  

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