Gig Review... Pulled Apart By Horses @ HMV Cambridge, 3rd September 2014

Back in May, Pulled Apart By Horses embarked on a mammoth of a UK tour with support from The Wytches playing some pretty intimate venues. One of these venues was The Portland Arms in Cambridge and I went down to take some photos of the gig. By the end of Pulled Apart By Horses’ set, security had given up and part of the ceiling had collapsed (probably due to frontman Tom Hudson crowd surfing during ‘High Five, Swan Dive, Nose Dive’) and hit bassist Rob Lee square in the face. It’s now early September and the band have returned to Cambridge, but instead of tearing a venue apart by loud, distorted punk rock and violent mosh pits, they are playing an acoustic set in HMV.

Promoting their new album, ‘Blood’, Pulled Apart By Horses decided that they would do the acoustic tour as it was not something they had done before. Personally, I wasn’t too sure what to expect. At no point was I expecting it to not live up to how good they sound at live shows, but it’s not normal to hear Pulled Apart By Horses and acoustic in the same sentence.

Opening their six song set with ‘V.E.N.O.M’ from 2012 release ‘Tough Love’, the band started to draw shoppers closer to hear what was going on. With Rob out of the game due to illness, the line up consisted of Tom Hudson, guitarist James Brown and drummer Lee Vincent. Playing through new songs such as ‘Hot Squash’, ‘Grim Deal’ and ‘Lizard Baby’ made me feel like I was at the Nirvana MTV Unplugged Session. Hudson’s voice suits their acoustic sound well and there isn’t many bands in their genre that can adapt to a completely different style of music. The set included a cover of Iggy and the Stooges’ ‘I Wanna Be Your Dog’ followed by the trio closing with fan favourite ‘High Five, Swan Dive, Nose Dive’.

It would be no surprise if Pulled Apart By Horses released an acoustic E.P sometime soon. The response to the songs being played on this short run are nothing but positive and it’s great to see a band with so much musical talent that they can experiment with new sounds. Make sure you check out their new album and catch them on their UK tour this November (21st - Manchester, 22nd - Glasgow, 24th - Brighton, 25th - Birmingham, 26th - Bristol, 28th - London) or on their short Dr Martens X DIY European run this week.

Written by - Nathan McLaren-Stewart