Music Reviews

“An Effortless Performance”- Live Review: INHALER @ Rock City

Thumbnail of a five-star review of the band INHALER, at Nottingham's Rock City.
Alice Leng

On Thursday 23rd February, Impact‘s Alice Leng attended INHALER’s concert at Nottingham’s Rock City. Here are her thoughts on the evening.

A cold, grey evening in Nottingham was anything but that inside Rock City on Thursday night. On February 23rd, INHALER stepped out onto the Rock City stage for the second time, this time following the recent release of their second album, ‘Cuts & Bruises’.

They were preceded by the band FEET, whose 5-part crew opened the night with their high-energy, entertaining, and slightly chaotic set, a mix of pop, indie, rock, and disco music. They left the audience in high spirits, creating an energetic atmosphere that endured for the rest of the night, and if the queue at the end of the show for their merch was any indication, they were well received by the Nottingham crowd.

Instantly recognised by the lively crowd

At exactly 8.30pm, INHALER emerged from the wings onto the stage, and launched into one of their most popular singles, These Are The Days, instantly recognised by the lively crowd, who sang and danced along throughout. It was an incredible start to an incredible show.

The Irish band, hailing from Dublin, consists of bassist Robert Keating, guitarist Josh Jenkinson, drummer Ryan McMahon, and frontman vocalist and guitarist Elijah Hewson.

Friends since they met at school

Although Hewson may be recognised as the son of the lead vocalist from U2, aka Bono (heard of him?), he and his bandmates, who have been friends since they met at school, are no doubt forging a name for themselves through their own music. Their success is only growing, and their performance at Rock City is evidence of that.

Their stage presence was fantastic, and their musicianship was spectacular. The quartet oozed coolness up on the stage in front of a venue that was full to the brim (a sold out show of 2000 people!), and exuded what appeared to be an effortless performance that highlighted the skill and talent that is undoubtedly going to catapult them towards more fame and fortune.

They played what was, in my opinion, a perfectly curated setlist, slowing the pace at points, and playing some of their new music from the recently released ‘Cuts & Bruise”s album, making the live debut of The Things I Do, but complimenting it nicely by returning to their well-known and well-loved hits such as Love Will Get You There, Cheer Up Baby, and If You’re Gonna Break My Heart. They also included a few fan favourites from their first album such as My Honest Face and When It Breaks.

Both a visual and auditory spectacle

The band passionately sang their songs about love, adolescence, and resilience, to a mixed crowd of both young and older fans, lit up onstage by a flash of multi-coloured lights, creating both a visual and auditory spectacle. The rockers transformed Nottingham’s infamous Rock City stage, and charmed the audience, who swayed and jumped and sang along with them from beginning to end, mosh pits and flying pints included. With their iconic guitar melodies and high-energy, true rock-esque rhythm section, I couldn’t think of a better way to spend a Thursday night.

INHALER belted out thirteen songs in just over an hour

There wasn’t much interaction with the crowd, a few “Hello Nottingham” and “thank you’s” from Hewson, but this nevertheless meant more time for the music. INHALER belted out thirteen songs in just over an hour, and they didn’t stop there! They left the stage nonchalantly, only to naturally return to the cheers and chants for an encore of two more songs, complete with an outfit change and all.

The four young Irish lads looked comfortable and confident on the stage, and if their performance on Thursday night is anything to go by, we can look forward to seeing them continue. They are scheduled to be joining Sam Fender at St James Park in June, as well as Harry Styles on his extended ‘Love On Tour’ for his Dublin gig, and have recently been announced as the support act for the Arctic Monkeys tour later this year.

Alice Leng

Featured image courtesy of Alex Watkin. Permission to use granted to Impact. No changes were made to this image.

In-article images courtesy of @inhalerdublin via No changes were made to these images.

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