Now for the main event: tonight is all about Gin Annie and the opportunity to showcase their excellent new album UND/V/DED. Based on the number of people wearing tour t-shirts, Bradford is not the first time that many in the audience have experienced the album live, which demonstrates the loyalty of the Gin Annie Devils. Opening with the double salvo of Rain and Last One Alive, it quickly becomes apparent that tonight’s set is going to be dominated by new songs. The band are on top form, with live wire guitarist Byron Garbett occupying every inch of Nightrain’s stage and trading licks with new guitarist Marc Bradley. Marc has brought a new energy to the band, filling out the trademark Gin Annie sound with tasty melodic riffs and acting as a foil to Byron’s extrovert style. Front and centre stands ringmaster Dave Foster, who leads us quickly into New Bad Habit; one of the highlights from debut album 100% Proof. Dave knows how to work a crowd and soon has everyone eating from the palm of his hand as the cheers echo around the room. After a short breather and hellos, Until You’re Mine gallops out of the starting gate with an incessant riff and lolloping bass line that greets you with the enthusiasm of a Labrador puppy. If this doesn’t bring a smile to your face, then you really ought to check your pulse to see if you’re still alive. The Seal hit Crazy came as something of a surprise on the album, with perhaps a little bit too much polish; but live it is rougher round the edges and works well.
If you’ve seen Gin Annie live before then you’ll know the backstory to Next To Me. Tonight there is no need for an explanation of what may – or may not – have been one of Byron’s youthful indiscretions. Instead, it is straight into that familiar riff and the tale of the morning after a one-night stand. Driven by Phill Burrows on bass and Lewis Turner on drums, this is a feel good, sing along song with an earworm chorus that refuses to leave your head. Paired together on the UND/V/DED album, Perfect Nightmare and Someday follow in quick succession demonstrating how the Gin Annie sound has moved on and matured since the debut. This is a more sophisticated and confident sound, with layered guitars and balanced harmonies. Someday is the big ballad complete with soaring chorus and tasty solo: you can just picture Byron atop a windswept cliff in a November Rain style video. After that diversion we need to bring the energy levels back up and Fallin’ does the job, with yet another hook-laden riff and chorus that you just have to sing along with. Now we are in the final stretch; the end is in sight but not before the hard rocking duo of Before and Not Gonna Take It reinforcing the strengths of the new confidence in the Gin Annie camp. The set closes with Devil In Me, the band’s most popular song on Spotify which has earned them approximately 6×10-6 pence according to Dave (that’s equivalent to bugger all for those who gave up on maths!). Judging by the smiling faces on stage at the end of the night, the band have enjoyed themselves just as much as the audience. Gin Annie are back and it’s time to take notice of the UND/V/DED.