Hawthorne Heights at Corporation – review

Hawthorne Heights at Corporation. Photo: Jade Knox

Hawthorne Heights at Corporation. Photo: Jade Knox

It would be a considerable understatement to describe how I felt as ‘excited’, writes Sheffield Live! volunteer Jade Knox, when I heard that this band would be returning to the steel city and performing their astonishing album The Silence in Black and White to celebrate the 10th anniversary of its release.

This experience for me, and presumably most people in the room that night, was wonderfully nostalgic having fallen in love with their music at only thirteen years old.

Hawthorne Heights are a band that spoke to me (and many others) lyrically at a time in most of our lives when we are emotionally astray trying to figure out who it is we are. Many young teens at the time and still today find solace in the rolling chords and bleeding hearts of musicians whose lyrics just seem to ‘make sense’ and speak to you directly.

Naturally, since I had first fallen for this album just under ten years ago my music tastes have grown alongside me, however as soon as these guys started their set it felt as if no time had passed at all.

Lead singer JT Woodruff was the cheeky and charismatic character I had always imagined him to be, commenting that the girls looked good and complimenting the crowd.

It’s always a pleasure to watch a gig in the small room at Corporation for the reason that it is a much more intimate setting. The band also removed the barrier you can often feel when in the presence of somebody you know is (or has once been) a pretty big deal, the gig was so relaxed and this was emphasised further by Woodruff’s invitation to fans to ‘hang out’ with him after the show as he would be just around the back.

It was evident during the gig that Hawthorne Heights have – and still do – mean a great deal to the fans. The room was alive: everyone there was singing their heart out and could join in to each song word perfect.

There is always an element of risk with gigs like this in that there could be an amount of disillusionment when time passes since a band first arrived on the scene or performed their initial material, especially if at one point or another you had held them in such high regard.

Now at twenty-two years old, Hawthorne Heights still pulled on my heartstrings in the same way they had done when I spent hours in my bedroom surrounded by CDs writing down my favourite lyrics. Although slightly more mature aesthetically the band have retained their sound beautifully and I am elated to have seen them live at last.

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