Concert Review: The Hollies Spring Tour 2015 – The Lowry, Salford


This review was originally written for The Public Reviews

With more hits than The Beatles, it’s no surprise that The Hollies need no support act. The Hollies remain one of the few British groups of the early 1960s to have never officially broken up and still continue to record and perform. Their longevity, popularity and extensive back catalogue has seen the group tour the world year on year since 1965 and amass a loyal fan base that still continues to grow.

The Hollies are a British rock/pop group who shot to fame in the 1960s. Originally formed by primary school friends Allan Clarke and Graham Nash, The Hollies have enjoyed considerable success over the past five decades with more than 60 singles to their name and 26 chart albums. In 2010, The Hollies were inducted to the prestigious Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in recognition of their achievements to popular music.

The latest tour sees original members Bobby Elliott (drums) and Tony Hicks (lead guitarist) team up with new members to perform the group’s chart topping UK hit singles. While The Hollies enjoyed their biggest success with Allan Clark (who retired in 1999) and Graham Nash (who left the group in 1968 to form Crosby, Stills & Nash), the latest incarnation of the group, who have been touring together for the past 10 years, still sound just as good as they did in the 60s. The harmonies are still as distinctive, the melodies are still addictive and the songs are still as upbeat as the day they were written.

The two-hour concert sees the group perform chart topping UK hit singles including I’m Alive, Carrie Anne, Bus Stop and Jennifer Eccles. A few classics have been intriguingly reworked to give the songs fresh appeal such as On a Carousel which is given a new modern, rock edge and Look Through Any Window which boasts a new acoustic intro.

The group also perform a selection of new songs from their latest two albums including Priceless, an acoustic solo performed by vocalist Peter Howarth and Weakness, an upbeat number well worth its place in the programme.

The highlight of the show is the hit anthem He Ain’t Heavy, He’s My Brother, which was rewarded with a prolonged standing ovation from the audience.

This year marks the 52nd anniversary for The Hollies and while the group members may be greying, they show no signs of stopping. After five decades, The Hollies are still a force to be reckoned with.

Reviewer: Donna Kelly