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Iconic New Wave Punks Blondie Kick Off a Spectacular Summer Line-up at The Piece Hall in Halifax [Photos]

Iconic new-wave punks Blondie kicked off a spectacular Summer line-up at The Piece Hall in Halifax. Check out the photos and review here…



Blondie live
Blondie, photo by Frank Ralph Photography

New York legends Blondie played two shows this weekend, marking the start of a packed 2024 edition of the Piece Hall’s summer shows. The buzz in the town before Sunday’s show was great, and even with a light rain in the air, there was an expectant and joyous feeling in the bars surrounding the iconic venue.

The K’s from Earlestown, near Warrington, opened the festivities with a set full of vibrant, upbeat indie tracks from their debut album, I Wonder if the World Knows?.

Frontman Jamie Boyle has an incredible voice and even threw in a bit of Cyndi Lauper’s “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” as an intro to “Hoping Maybe.” Whilst the other guys looked like they were having fun playing to a welcoming audience, it was guitarist Ryan Bresling who looked like he enjoyed it the most as he put his guitar through a strenuous workout and threw some iconic moves throughout the set. Their pulsating and energetic set, whilst laced with more dreamy, melancholic moments, set the energy for the night and most definitely earned them some new fans.

Blondie, and in particular Debbie Harry, cemented their iconic status decades ago, and it’s fitting that a band of this stature should open proceedings at this iconic venue.

As the screen at the back of the stage burst into life with static, one of the coolest people to ever walk the earth took to the stage with a wry smile and a wave towards the adoring audience suffering the conditions to see them. It’s a safe bet that a high percentage of the audience had Debbie Harry posters on their wall as teenagers, so a bit of rain was never going to dampen their spirits.

They launched into “One Way or Another,” and everything looked and sounded effortlessly cool. Debbie Harry looked cool in her shades and jacket. The stage looked cool with the on-screen graphics and an original Sex Pistol on bass; well, that’s pretty cool, too.

Songs like that and “Hanging on the Telephone” or “Call Me” that followed early in the set have lived in the stratosphere for so long that they feel like old friends. It was smash hit after smash hit, where some bands have the need for fillers in between their ‘big songs’ Blondie doesn’t, and this was everything you could have wished for from them, and the energy was great.

With original Blondie drummer Clem Burke on the skins and Glen Matlock on bass laying down the grooves, the two guitarists were free to shred their way through some epic solos, and they sounded incredible.

Debbie shared some funny moments with the crowd, who were quick to point out that it hadn’t stopped raining when she thought it had or discussing her now frizzy hair. The rain had now become torrential rather than just drizzle, but who hasn’t sung “Atomic” in the shower or rapped into the shower head for “Rapture” before, eh?

They closed the show with a bang as the screen behind appeared to shatter as the intro to “Heart of Glass” began and enjoyed one of the biggest singalongs of the night. Debbie’s own “Dog Star Girl” and the thunderous drums of “Dreaming” formed the encore and made sure everyone left with a smile on their faces. Wet, so very wet – but smiling.

Personally, I would have loved to have had the chance to see them live in their heyday at CBGBs, but the Piece Hall has a habit of attracting some of the biggest names in music and having these icons visit an iconic venue in my hometown is something I’ll never forget. Here’s to a massive summer of music in one of the best venues in the country.