LIVE: Axis Of NYE Album Launch – Empire, Belfast

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Axis Of, the alternative hardcore three piece from the North Coast launched their new Album ‘The Mid Brae Inn’ on New Year’s Eve at the Empire Music Hall, bringing in the 2015 with a bang.

The evening kicked off with an enthusiastic performance by Team RKT, the energetic electro pop duo consisting of Rory Powers and Kit Grier.

Next up was Belfast rapper Bee Mick See accompanied by his entire band. His set was fantastic, easily the best I have ever seen him. He performed newer songs like ‘Awkward’’ and ‘We Took a Dive’ as well as classics like ‘Single’.

The band appeared to be thoroughly enjoying performing. Brendan Seamus (Bee Mick See) held tremendous chemistry with his band as well as having a great rapport with the audience. The set was tight and very entertaining.

More than Conquerors, the alternative four piece from Belfast were next up and performed a typically strong set, playing all the crowd favourites including ‘When the Well Runs Dry’ and ‘Pits of Old’. The set was very well received by the incredibly high spirited audience.

By 11.10pm the music hall, which was by this stage completely packed, was simmering with anticipation.

As Axis Of’s stage time approached, sounds of crashing waves began growing louder, setting the tone for the show. The trio kicked off their set with the upbeat ‘Wetsuit’, the first single from their new album.

The song with its distinctive riffs, positive tone and complementary harmonies was a great choice for opening the show. The crowd became more and more hyped up as the band played a great selection of their new tunes from ‘The Mid Brae Inn’. Axis Of did a dedication to their friend and photographer Ciara McMullan before playing ‘Cardiel’ which prompted a huge audience response, with most singing along passionately.

When midnight approached, the band exited the stage, only to be called back by roaring shouts of “One more tune!”.

The countdown began as Axis Of took to the stage. The entire music hall counted in the New Year, cheering and shouting as 2015 began. Axis Of played their own version of Auld Lang Syne to raucous appreciation and then finished off their set with ‘Lifehammer’ with the whole crowd joining in.

The night was both an enjoyable end to 2014 and an excellent start to the New Year. Una Mackle, GiggingNI.com