Live Photos and Gig Review Credit: Duncan Everson (Photographer/Live Gig reporter Myglobalmind Webzine
With the schedule for an interview with Fearless Vampire Killers being moved due to unforeseen circumstances, it meant that I wasn’t able to see the main support band ATTILA. Sorry about that guys, I’ll try and catch you next time. Here’s what the other bands had to offer.
First up were Drama Club, a two man DJ team and dance music really isn’t my sort of thing, so I wasn’t particularly looking forward to this but how bad can it be? Well, they seemed very popular with the crowd, who all seemed to be having a great time but to me it just seems like playing a CD loudly and why does it take two of them to do that? However, when I actually recognised a couple of the tracks – The Prodigy’s Smack My Bitch Up and Closer by Nine Inch Nails – I surprised myself and ended up enjoying it. While I won’t be listening to them outside of a gig like this, I did come away thinking a lot more highly of them than I thought I would and despite some technical difficulties they did a great job of warming up the crowd. (Still not my sort of thing though).
I’ve seen Fearless Vampire Killers a number of times before but it’s been a while since the last time and I was looking forward to hearing some of the new material live ahead of the imminent album release. I wasn’t disappointed as both of the songs that have been released in video form so far, “Neon In The Dance Halls” and “Maeby”, were played and proved to be as good live as they are in the studio, which bodes well. In fact “Neon…” included some of the best crowd singing of their set and got a great reception, as did “Could We Burn, Darling?” with its unprompted clap-along at the start. The highlight of the set, and, for me, one of the highlights of the night, was “At War With The Thirst” which has always been a favourite but was raised to a whole new level and showed an increased confidence from the band. The crowd singing during the choruses was particularly loud during this song and the band looked as though they were thoroughly enjoying themselves throughout. The twin guitar harmonies were just excellent at the end and the whole song seemed heavier than I’ve heard it before. FVK describe their music as death pop – I don’t know what that is but I would describe it as fast, heavy rock with elements of pop punk in the catchy choruses. They are probably the closest musically to the headliners playing tonight and with this performance and the show of hands raised to the back of the hall applauding at the end of their set, I think the previously unconverted will be taking another look at Youtube and Spotify from now on. This was the best I’ve seen the band so far, bring on the next time!
Kier Kemp – Co-Vocals/Rhythm Guitar
Laurence Beveridge – Co-Vocals/Rhythm Guitar
Cyrus Barrone – Guitar
Drew Woolnough – Bass
Luke Illingworth – Drums
And so it was time for the main attraction and I have to admit (and I don’t care what anyone says!) that I am a big fan of Black Veil Brides, despite being probably three times the age and a different gender to their average fan! And this proved to be the case judging by the screams that met the band as they took to the stage. “Heart Of Fire” was first and was one of the two new songs that have already been released from their new album, just the same as Fearless Vampire Killers, and as was also the case with the other new one, “Fearless”, show that the band are set to continue in a similar style to their previous albums. The band certainly like to work hard for their money as there was barely a time all night when they were still for more than a few moments. Andy prowled around the stage and worked the crowd from start to finish making sure everyone was involved, front to back and side to side as a great frontman should. “Knives & Pens” showed what great guitarists Jinxx and Jake are, their twin solos were excellent and the riff came across as being particularly heavy tonight.
There were some surprises to the setlist too, with the first playing in the UK of “Coffin” and also two songs that are currently unreleased, “Goodbye Agony” which was a ballad-y kind of song – starting slowly before building to mid-tempo and had many arms in the air that years ago would have been holding lighters aloft. The other was “Last Rites” which featured a great riff and skilled solos and was definitely the heavier of the two. “Rebel Love Song” was one of the crowd’s favourites with a great cheer/scream going up when it was announced. “All Your Hate” had the whole crowd jumping along with Andy but it was “Perfect Weapon” that probably takes the accolade of my favourite song of BVB’s set with it being both heavy and tight as the band clearly enjoyed playing it. “Fallen Angels” had the whole crowd singing along but the inevitable encore of “In The End” was definitely the loudest singing all night – even I joined in!
The last time I saw Black Veil Brides it all seemed so slick and professional that it verged on being scripted and rehearsed but that may be down to it being the end of a long tour with a band that had all the rough edges taken off. This gig, however was right at the start of a new tour with a new setlist and new material and as such was much more spontaneous with a smiling band clearly enjoying themselves and having a great time and they weren’t the only ones! In fact, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if this was the last time Black Veil Brides play in venues this small.
Andy Biersack – Vocals
Jinxx – Guitar
Jake Pitts – Guitar
Ashley Purdy – Bass
Christian (CC) Coma – Drums