The Apex, Bury. It’s impossible not to love The Hot Damn!, their neon colours and supernova bright tunes lighting up a rock scene primarily known for its black garb and visceral punch.
The Hot Damn! – The Apex
Bury St Edmunds – 27 February 2023
Words: Paul Monkhouse
Photography: Matt Bradford
A blazing force of nature, they hit the stage running in a blur of bright hues and unfettered energy as they tear into opening number Fizz Crash Bang, its fizzing pop rock made even more addictive by the gorgeous harmonies.
Dance Around continued the sugar rush. Its Go-Go’s meets Bruce Springsteen summery vibes made for open-top cars and highways as Gill Montgomery leads everyone singing along with its “I love it” bridge.
Lzi Hayes bass drives the new single Can You Hear Me Now, its feelgood shine seeing the behatted Laurie Buchanan spinning wildly as she peels out the central riff, the glam rock meets Fleetwood Mac stomp and verve of Loud And Clear breaking down the last bit of resistance as bodies start to fill the floor in front of them.
At the rear of the stage, drummer Josie O’Toole is a blur of flying limbs and tousled hair, hitting her kit with bounce and power, partner in rhythm Hayes throwing shapes whilst Buchanan continues to tear about the stage as Montgomery looks cool in blue behind the mic stand.
The urgent Live Laugh Love races along before the cheeky steal of Janis Joplin’s Mercedes Benz is twisted into an exhortation to buy some merchandise, and Going Down cranks things up again to fever pitch.
With the joyful middle finger salute of I Didn’t Like You Anyway closing, its irresistible hook one that will stick in heads for days, the quartet took their well-earned bows, ensuring that there was indeed a good queue keen to purchase a tie-dye t-shirt or two from the merchandise stall.
With enough energy to power a small city and the tunes to match, the future for The Hot Damn! is as bright as their brightly glowing neon outfits.