Live Review: Cattle & Cane at Think Tank, Newcastle

Joe Hammill from Cattle & Cane certainly didn’t disappoint in his interview with us. He said the band’s upcoming Newcastle gig was going to be a mix of new songs and brilliant older songs from their recent album, as Cattle & Cane launch their new album Home at home (see what we did there) at Newcastle’s Think Tank. 

We are family 

If you haven’t heard of Cattle & Cane, then where have you been? The band from Middlesbrough is made up of singers Joseph and Helen alongside brothers Fran and Vin, and family friend Tom.

Playing tracks from the new album Home, the fans enjoyed singing along with their songs. ‘Dancing’ was a particular favourite as it got Cattle & Cane all choked up when they heard their own songs sung back to them.


‘Dancing’ was quite a slow and emotional song, and I have to admit that it had me in tears. There’s something special about this band; the way they manage to pull you in with emotion through music and really make you listen to what they’re playing. It’s magic to my ears. 

Not all doom and gloom, these guys also know how to rock it up and party. The live performance of ‘Skies’ had everyone up and about, dancing like there was no tomorrow. ‘Skies’ is such a feel-good song that you can’t help but move your feet to the Cattle & Cane beat.

Standing in the small yet intimate venue of the Think Tank, looking around you could tell from the audience that the band have already gained a close following. Especially as they were playing in their hometown, many of the audience were from Teeside, and I had never seen such strong support for a small band that are only getting started in their music career.

North-East music 

Cattle & Cane are clearly passionate about celebrating North-East music, as they introduced to us two very talented artists – Newcastle folk musician, Jake Houlsby, and Liverpudlian pop-rocker Natalie McCool.  

Opening the Home tour, Jake Houlsby set the scene with music that was almost interchangable with Cattle & Cane. He eased us into the mood for the night, getting the audience fully engaged in his performance. Playing some rather relaxing songs with a soulful voice and a guitar in hand, his voice was like a steaming cup of hot chocolate that just winds you down for the day.

Just when we thought that we were easing ourselves gently into the night, Natalie McCool wanted to shake things up a bit. She soon got the audience up and dancing at the Think Tank. I had previously heard her on BBC Radio 1, on Huw Stephens’ Introducing Show, and I enjoyed her live performance. Likening her to a cross between Lilly Allen and Jessie J, her music was pop-rock yet her voice was soft and angelic. Luring us into a false of security, she looks and sounds so gentle, but her music was far from it. 

I was rather impressed by the performances from all three artists, and if this is just a small taster of what today’s upcoming artists have to offer, then I look forward to more.

To see if Cattle & Cane are touring near you, visit their website.

Are you a fan of Cattle & Cane? Let us know in the comments below!