After 18 months in absence, it goes without saying that the UK are more than hungry for Sheffield’s Bring Me The Horizon to tour again, especially following a full month after the release of their critically acclaimed new record, ‘Sempiternal’. Now, back on the road, hitting intimate venues when compared to what they can easily sell out now, and with a whole album’s worth of new material, we went to get involved at tour stop number one: Manchester.
Rising progressive rock/metal outfit Empress (***) seem to be a huge buzz band lately. It’d be a shameful lie to say that the London quartet aren’t talented and definitely passionate about what they do, it’s just a pity that what they do doesn’t quite have enough bite and appears to still be in its early infancy. The best way to describe them would be somewhat like a more progressive British Mastodon in training. There are areas to work on, but at least they’re getting good support slots to learn tricks from their peers.
Imported from the other side of the world, Japanese upstarts Crossfaith (****) however are more than capable of whipping up a storm in the Academy 2 room. Opening up with their destructive hit ‘Monolith’, the crowd immediately opens up for some of the first of many real pits of the evening. Frontman Kenta Koie surprsingly has an amazing grip of the English language and, more importantly, how to command a crowd. It is, however, their cover of The Prodigy‘s single ‘Omen’ that gets the hugest reaction, setting the bar incredibly high and setting some steep competition for the headliners to match up to. Potentially the coolest thing to come out of Japan since Pokémon.
Despite their best and most valiant efforts however, Bring Me The Horizon (*****) manage to, as expected, blow all attempts to get the crowd moving up to now completely out of the water. Getting right into the thick of things with the huge chant inducing ‘Shadow Moses’, it’s from this moment on where things go from messy to absolutely choatic. Only three songs in, and midway through ‘Alligator Blood’, the band manage to not only somewhat blow the speakers but somehow also set off the fire alarm, and don’t even show this effecting their stride.
Once things are back up and running, the show continutes, composing of a set filled with some of the band’s biggest numbers along with some live renditions of new album material. Obvious huge contenders ‘It Never Ends’ and ‘Chelsea Smile’ get the crowd screaming, surfing and circle pitting from start-to-finish, but it’s the more hook ridden ‘Sleepwalking’ and mellowest offering of the night ‘And The Snakes Start To Sing’ which offer some of the biggest highlights. The constant screams of “fuck” throughout set closer ‘Antivist’ really sets the tone.
Many think that Bring Me The Horizon have been on a path to overwhelming success for a while, but in actuality, they’re only just getting started.
Written by Zach Redrup