As the COVID pandemic drags on and artists struggle to find a way to express themselves, livestreaming has become a necessary tool. Many bands and artists have taken to the web to entertain the masses at home. Some by simply sitting in front of a cheap web-camera and strumming their guitar. Others, by bringing massive productions and turning their stream into something more akin to a movie.
One such band who went for the latter late last year was the Californian rap-rock/EDM/punk outfit, Hollywood Undead. Called ‘House Party’, the livestream event was elaborate and spectacular. Everything you would expect from a band that is unafraid to punch for the stars.
So successful was that, and as the pandemic drags on, Hollywood Undead are back with their second livestream show. A follow-up to House Party, Undead Unhinged took place on April 30th 2021.
Now, let’s get this clear from the start.
I wouldn’t call myself a fan of Hollywood Undead at all. However, their wide-ranging popularity is clear and I’m always up for having my mind changed. So this livestream was must watch. Has my mind been changed by seeing it? Absolutely but not necessarily for the reasons you might expect.
Did I hear some banging music? Absolutely, however what really got my interest was the ‘documentary’ approach to this live-stream. One which saw the members of the band offering insight into each song’s background and creation from different locations. Telling tales, be they nonsensical stories that are very much in Hollywood Undead character to an excellent recap of the issues surrounding the release of their first album. Constantly fascinating stuff and a really deep dive into the minds of Hollywood Undead.
Having these retrospectives made me really appreciate what I was hearing when it came to the band performing. Which is of course, a major part of this near-two hour livestream event.
A simple but inspired set design keeps the attention focused on what is important and that is the band who prove to have hit after hit. The likes of Whatever it Takes (meaty metal – Hollywood Undead style), Day of the Dead (a nu-metal romp), Undead (such an anthem) and the disgustingly catchy combination of Coming Home and Everywhere I Go (a silly but fun closer).
However, the middle portion of the set is what really did it for me. It saw Hollywood Undead switch to an acoustic sound with the added bonus of having a small symphony with them. Here, the band don’t just play some of their own music acoustically but cover a few of their favourites too. The clear winner and easily my favourite moment of the stream being their cover of Credence Clearwater Revival’s Have You Ever Seen the Rain. A wonderfully passionate display and one that made me appreciate Hollywood Undead all the more.
Admittedly, there’s not a lot of sense and structure to the livestream overall but that just made it all the more fun to watch. Polished but not obviously polished, the band clearly enjoyed themselves here. That shit is infectious and it really paid off.
Hollywood Undead - Undead Unhinged (30/04/21)
The Final Score - 9/10