By Alfie Perry-Ward, History Student
'You get the sense that She makes War has so much more to give, and that this is just the beginning', History student Alfie Perry-Ward reviews She Makes War at Rough Trade
No one can miss the iconic presence of the Rough Trade that sits under New Bridewell on Union street. A label that has seen the rise of some of the most influential bands and artists in this country’s history, and a shop that is a cornerstone of this city’s alternative scene. At the rear of the bright white shop is the dark, almost industrial live room which, on Monday night, was the venue that She Makes War played a free show and signing event to mark the release of her new record, Brace for impact.
The solo project of Laura Kidd drew a loyal crowd of somewhere between 40 and 50 fans. The artist asked who had heard the new material, and was disappointed to hear that the majority had:'Damn! I was hoping to sell some more records tonight'.
Kidd was backed by high energy drums and flanked by a gloomy bass line, a lyrical guitar and an impressive backing singer. The show began heavy. Powerful riffs created the grunginess that She Makes War has become known for. However, the show entailed a far more melodic and gentle setlist than was expected, exploring a new aspect to Kidd’s song writing. The enchanting echoes of ‘Then the Quiet came’ drew everyone in, and ‘Hold on’ proved to be the sweetest of ballads. A highlight of the night was certainly ‘Fortify’, taken from the new album - a steady and beautiful mix, rolling beats that sit under Kidd’s harmonic voice. Think Milagres meets Chvrches, with a Bristol twist. All were highly attentive and supportive, She Makes War has a real ability to create an atmosphere.
Time and time again we were reminded of the grunge sound that so many of her fans love. The all-encompassing ‘Devastate Me’, the new single off Brace For Impact, drew the set to a close with remarkable strength.
Whilst the show was impressive, the limits of the venue, and size of crowd perhaps restricted the potential of what a live show by She Makes War could be. Things will only get bigger for Laura Kidd and her solo project; the shows will only get better. May we all be lucky enough to be there when they do.
Featured Image: She Makes War/ My Big Sister Recordings
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