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Gig Review: The SoapGirls Play Outstanding Performance At The Voodoo In Belfast With Belwood

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Sunday evenings can be a bit of a drag as thoughts turn to the beginning of a new week and a return to work, but tonight those thoughts were banished in the Voodoo, Belfast as two bands get ready to hit the stage, Belfast’s own BELWOOD and the incredible anarchistic THE SOAPGIRLS.

First on stage are BELWOOD who immediately start blowing away the cobwebs with rolling, punchy and catchy tunes with the likes of “Nothing to Defend”, Be There” and “Waiting”. Whilst they are chugging out the music your spidey senses tingle with the slight undertone feel of The Police, but with a more alternative rock edge. “No Sympathy”, All the Same” and Head away” continue the onstage energy that just has your head involuntarily moving in time with the tuneage rolling of the stage.

The band work well together, gelled through the rhythm of the drums and the bass driven riffs. This three piece know how to enjoy themselves. “Difference”, “Left Alone”, “out Of The Blue” and “Struggling On” finish their set. Anyone who didn’t make it missed a great band of well practiced musicians who can really turn out the tracks.

Then come THE SOAPGIRLS. And what a three piece full on act they are. From the very moment they are on stage, there is no mistaking, you are in for one hell of a show. No compromise, no bull, no holding back whatsoever. From the animalistic long haired drummer, Sam, to the two body painted girls, Mie and Millie, they are the embodiment of pure rock and roll imbued with raw punk attitude.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YFmVFCPtZBk&w=560&h=315]

They have an attention grabbing look, but do they have the wherewith all to carry it off? For a split second, it could almost feel like they are an act that could look the look but implode once they start playing. This is what can get the emotions swaying.

Mie, bassist and main vocalist, introduces the first song with real feeling, pretty much immediately grabbing everyone in the crowd. And from the very first bang of the drum, chug of the bass, strum of the guitar and clarity of the two girl’s vocals, of “Ex-Girlfriend” you immediately know not only can they pull off their look and attitude, they are something almightily special. All in one package.

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“Jonny Rotten”, “Society’s Rejects” and “Bitter” utterly cement the mesmerising stage presence of the group. Its pop, its rock, its alternative, its punk, its metal, its sweet, its raw and it really shouldn’t work. But the magic the three weave is unmistakable. It works and it works incredibly well.

“White Flag”, “Original Sin” and “Fall Down” all are slammed home with a raw energy and passion that you feel like you are witnessing something very special indeed, from Millie’s infectious smile, to Mie’s incredible gymnastic body bending and mindblowing antics right through to Sam’s preternatural and animalistic mastery of the drum kit. It is a live show to behold.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LfmsO-pBxIg&w=560&h=315]

In between songs the girls put forward their manifesto of freedom, choice and badass advice for life has the crowd roaring in approval. You can’t not listen to what they say.

“Fall Down”, “Hate Breeds” and “Drown” just solidify they have mastered their musical craft and won’t compromise – they go at it all with 100%. It is a sound and style that is all their own and they know it.

Finishing off their set with “Real”, there is a real sense of disappointment that the complete entertainment package of THE SOAPGIRLS will soon leave the stage and the show is over.

You really want to do yourself a favour and go see THE SOAPGIRLS live and in the flesh (quite literally! The body paint is all their wear on stage bar a pair of knickers, a hair piece and their instruments.) They truly are a unique rock out experience that is one of a kind.

Review by Ivor Whitten

Photography by metalplanetmusic

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