Hornet @ Intrepid Fox, London

Friday, October 25th 2013
Review  by Steve Salmon

On this late October Friday evening, something special was on the cards. It wasn’t the road work barriers, surrounding the Intrepid Fox that was going to hinder this event, which was evident with the amount of people in the smoking area outside. The big red devil above the door beckoned metal head and rockers alike to the single launch of Hornet’s “Storm The Gates”. We prepared ourselves in the intimate surroundings of the Intrepid Foxes upstairs live area and cemented our place by the stage. The stage was being set up for Hornet, which consisted of a small lighting rig flanking the drummer, two mannequins in white bio-hazzard suits and masks. These stood menacingly in front of the bass and guitar amps. There was also a small platform in front of the drum kit, for which gave the fans a chance, to catch a better view of various band members during the gig.

The band starts their show in their usual fashion, introducing themselves with lead singer Joe Thompson shouting “We are Hornet and we play mother fucking rock ‘n’ roll”. His words are followed by guitarist Tollef Rikje-Pearson and co with a stamp of authority on their instruments.
The Hornet set kicked off with “Drive On”, which served as a good rocking opener. The revs from the first song kicked into overdrive with their second song of the set “State Of Emergency”. At this point Hornet had the fans in their hands, which resulted in to a moshpit. Given the size of the floor space in front of the stage, this is no mean feat.

As usual, one of the fan favourite “Sweet Lips”, gets introduced in Hornet’s special style by frontman Joe Thompson, which fits the song perfectly. Anyone, listening to this song for the first time, might get the wrong impression.

The song “Hunky Dorey” could be seen by some as an homage to AC/DC, which is supported by the groove laden riffs and rocking tempo and guitarist Tollef Rikje-Pearson being carried from the stage on the shoulders of singer Joe Thompson. Arguably hints of Angus Young until Tollef Rikje-Pearson ,while still playing, makes his way through the hot and sweaty fans back to the diminutive stage.

The bands official single “Storm The Gates”, which was launched tonight, adds another dimension to the full on rocking set, with its dynamics. With its more sedate intro and verse, the tempo and volume really picks up, when the chorus kicks in. This song shows, just how versatile and tight Hornet are and could also prove, that “Storm The Gates” is worthy of single status.

The set closes with fan favourite “Rock ‘N’ Roll Riot!”, which kicks off the mother of all moshpits within the confines of the Intrepid Fox. No one really cared, if their drink was spilt or if they got pinned to the front of the stage, as the energy from the band was providing the fuel, so that this moshpit could have gone on for the rest of the night. Hornet where determined to go out with a bang and they did so with this song, but to make absolutely sure, they set off a confetti canon full of orange confetti.

This trade mark Hornet performance could and should be the catalyst of a great rock’n’roll future. It is safe to say that rock’n’roll is in safe hands of Joe Thompson – Vocals, Tollef Rikje-Pearson – Guitar, Max Thompson – Bass and Alex Burt – Drums. AC/DC would be damn proud.

Set List:
1. Drive On
2. State Of Emergency
3. I’m Gonna Be The Man
4. Sweet Lips
5. Second Hand Smoke
6. Hunky Dorey
7. Storm The Gates
8. Under Pressure
9. Skies Are Falling
10. Rock ‘N’ Roll Riot!