Nigel Pearson revealed that he had asked for the artificial crowd noise at Ashton Gate to be turned off during the first half of their Championship stalemate against Nottingham Forest.
Both sides hit a post with first half shots, Alex Mighten for Forest on 27 minutes and Henri Lansbury 15 minutes later for the hosts.
Former City player Luke Freeman almost won it for the visitors as a substitute in stoppage time with a fierce volley that flew inches over.
But the home side had seen a loud penalty appeal rejected when Antoine Semenyo went down inside the box on 75 minutes.
Ultimately, neither team could find the breakthrough.
“It was getting on my nerves and I wanted to hear my lads encouraging each other on the pitch,” said the City manager after his side had ended a club record run of seven successive home defeats.
“They did it well and there was a togetherness about the performance, which was really important after the display in our last game.”
Pearson added: “I suppose relief is the right word because you can’t argue with statistics.
“We have found it tough dealing with the pressure of the poor home run, but today I thought the team showed a real togetherness.
“There was more control to our play in the second half, but we are not kidding ourselves. It was a small step in the right direction.
“I don’t want to go down the road of complaining about the penalty that wasn’t given, even though it looked a good shout.
“The important thing was to see the players working hard for one another. Han Noah Massengo was excellent in that respect and Henri Lansbury showed his experience alongside him.
“Sam Pearson did well on his first start. It was by no means a classic performance and you can’t hide from scoring only one goal in eight home games.
“But it was a move in the right direction. There is a lot more hard work ahead to get to where we want to be.
“My contract is only until May, but I am working the same as if it were for longer, which may prove the case.
“There are a lot of things to sort out, whoever is in charge next season.”
Forest boss Chris Hughton says his side need to find more attacking edge.
“Overall, I was pleased with our performance, but we didn’t work their goalkeeper enough, considering the amount of possession we had,” Hughton said.
“I want us to keep clean sheets, but not become known for that without posing a threat going forward.
“We need to score more goals and they must come either from the current team or from new players we bring in for next season.
“It is going to be a challenging summer in the transfer market for most managers.
“Before the game we told the players to expect a reaction from City because they have been on a poor run, particularly at home.
“The first half was a reflection of where the two teams stood. One lacked confidence and we tried to take advantage with a fast start.
“Some of our build-up play really pleased me. But it was the sort of game where if you dominate and don’t score, you can lose it at the end.
“They made a lot of changes and went pretty direct, but we handled it well. Looking forward, we have to be better at turning possession into chances.”