Wow, what a band, what a performance. Hollowstar played a slot on the Local Bands Stage at the Cambridge Big Weekend on Saturday 8 July.
The band themselves were created in 2015 and are a four-piece rock band from St Ives in Cambridgeshire. They play good, loud, energetic, punchy rock with strong riffs, hard hitting drums and awesome guitar solos. They have a great local following that were there in their droves including Star Radio’s host of the Sunday Rock Show, Neil Jones, who received a special shout out from the band. Joe provides lead vocals and plays the bass guitar, his brother Jack is on drums, with Phil and Tom on the guitars taking turns to play lead. The first thing Joe said was that they had been warned about playing too loud. I think that was about as far as they took that request as they then proceeded to crank up their custom covered Marshall speakers to the max and blow the cobwebs out of the tent.
They played six tracks in all over the following 30-minute set and left me wanting more. Money, Lay Down, In My Dreams, Feel the Burn, Holding it Together and New Age Lullaby. Four tracks came from their newly released EP, Some Things Matter which has been met with high acclaim since its release last month.
The first track, “Money”, left us in no doubt of what was to follow. In Joe, they also have a frontman that looks like a rock star should with his long flowing hair that he proceeds to shake as much as he can. The second track, “Lay Down”, got everybody shouting the chorus and eating out of their hands. Its riff is awesome and I loved it. Phil and Tom are able to switch the lead and rhythm on the guitars at will and each brings their own style and sound which flows seamlessly through the tracks. Jack had his own fun on the drums and hats. He was smashing them so hard they were deciding to move and rock on their own. He did a great job of keeping them under control while not affecting the performance one iota.
As if switching lead guitars wasn’t enough we were also shown that Phil can play a mean bass as well on one of their slower tracks. Joe concentrated on providing us with powerful vocals while Tom showed us his lead guitar skills showing us that they are all fully accomplished musicians. Our final treat was to see Cambridge legend, Colin Hazel, join his favourite band on stage with his tambourine. Colin has done so much for music in Cambridge over the years and it was great to see Cambridge’s latest up and coming new rock band acknowledge his support over the years. Well done Colin and well done Hollowstar.
Hollowstar sing and play with both passion and charisma. Phil and Joe are great performers to the crowd and it makes watching them an absolute pleasure. I was privileged to meet the band afterwards. They are all great guys who love playing rock music to their fans old and new. I would certainly call myself a big fan now and can’t wait to see them later this year at the Subterranean Festival, when they support Stone Broken, and again at Melbourn Rock Club, when they support Joanovarc.