Drella, The Underground

When better to celebrate the launch of an EP than Independent Music Week? Brightly lit steps down to Bradford’s The Underground quickly revealed a contrastingly dark, edgy venue that was every bit as loud as you’d have wanted from Drella’s massive headliner. 

Drella, The Underground, 3/2/23

The stage was dressed, smoky from machines, and the opening act, TMP, emerged from the fog. The Keighley three-piece came armed with an assortment of their own material and a palatable surprise Nirvana cover later into their performance. And one glance at the room behind me and it was filled with wanting faces clutching pints and raring for a good night. 

Wolforna’s turn was next. Although they’re known for their faultless deliveries at Leeds gigs in particular, the band are pretty much Bradford locals, and the venue suited their style to boot. Regulars roared for their latest single, ‘Reset’, and arguably their most popular to date, ‘Penrose’, but there was a real magnetism and energy to the boys as they masterfully conjured up some yet-to-be-released material. Of which, ‘Break You’ had ears in raptures and bodies moving.

Wolforna, The Underground, 3/2/23

By way of Easter-egg-style homage to their Prospect Studios fellows, Drella, Wolforna had even interlaced their own burst of a take on ‘Heartstring Noose’. A classy touch and, with that, there was an audible boost in the pre-headliner atmosphere. 

Wolforna, The Underground, 3/2/23

Before we knew it, the building had received its last injection of fans and punters, and we were into a moshing-induced, frenzied set from the headliners. The screaming generated by the crowd indicated that ‘Hypocrisy’ remained a winner, but the just-dropped tunes, including my personal favourite, ‘Lie To Me’, all went down a storm, too.

Naturally, that riotous ’Bonkers’ cover was another invitation for folks to get on shoulders and let loose. Their slot seemed to draw to an end too soon for all the revellers, who pleaded for more and were granted a one-song encore. If that’s not a musician’s answer to a firm pat on the back, I don’t know what is. 

Drella, The Underground, 3/2/23

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