November 2nd | The Lanes
Though it’s been a while since Grandma’s House played their last show, you wouldn’t be able to tell from their performance tonight, brought to us by Gravy Train at The Lanes. Playing one of their biggest shows yet, in support of their destructive new single ‘No Place Like Home’, the band have never sounded better.
Grandma’s House have quickly made a name for themselves in the Bristol music scene over the past couple of years and it’s visible through the excitement in the room before they even arrive on stage. Despite their heavy, self-dubbed “surfy post-punk” sound, there is a homeliness and sense of togetherness to their music that makes their name very fitting.
But before they hit the stage, Bristol mainstays Wych Elm do a fantastic job of turning the energy in the room up that extra notch. With their Pixies-like grunge-folk stylings, they tear through a set of highlights from last year’s Rat Blanket EP. On one song the band even bust out an accordion – a move that shouldn’t work as well as it does.
Shortly after Wych Elm wrap up their set, Grandma’s House take to the stage. They kick things off with new single, ‘No Place Like Home’, a fierce and jagged post-punk giant. The song builds slowly, oozing tension before giving way to its huge shout-along chorus. It’s an understatement to say the song feels timely, its lyrics a rallying cry. And the energy doesn’t really let up from there. The band play a strong mix of familiar cuts – including their brilliant song about a pasty woman – as well as new ones crafted during lockdown.
Each member of the band gets their turn in the spotlight during the set. Drummer Poppy leads the charge on most songs, kicking things off with a Ramones-like 1-2-3-4, managing to sound both technical and raw at the same time. Bassist Zoe acts at the group’s backbone, while guitarist Yasmin rips things up with her chugging riffs. The group have a raw DIY energy that calls to mind early punk.
Despite the heaviness of the music – and the general mood beyond The Lanes – Grandma’s House manage to provide some levity, bantering with the audience between songs. At one point, the drummer’s trouser leg gets caught her drumkit in the middle of the song, causing them to pause. However, the band pick up right where the left off and it just ends up adding to the casual, homely feel of the evening.
Recent single ‘Devil’s Advocate’ is another stand-out moment: a two-minute burst of energy that tears through the room. It also highlights the excellent vocal interplay between the band members, with their voices playing off each other in a way that calls to mind early Sleater-Kinney.
Despite it likely being everyone’s last show for a little while, it feels like tonight has given everyone in the audience a shot in the arm. It’s hard not to get excited about what Grandma’s House are doing and what they’re going to do next.
See the video for ‘No Place Like Home’ here:
Featured Image by Rosie Carne