LIVE: Flood Of Red @ The Underground, Stoke-on-Trent (13/11/2010)

Date: November 13th, 2010
Venue: The Underground, Stoke-on-Trent
Support: Fallen Inquest, Heights, House Vs. Hurricane
Website: None available
MySpace: www.myspace.com/floodofred

Rating:

With a distinctive shift in sound between their EP and full-length, Glasgow’s Flood Of Red have to an extent got a split of fans; those enjoying the screamo post-hardcore work of the early days, and the more recent ambient alternative rock we know them for today. Their Flood Vs. Hurricane tour, alongside Australians House Vs. Hurricane, is their last stint across the UK before 2010 comes to a close.

Early local openers are barely alike their headlining peers, Fallen Inquest (*) instead opt for a metalcore dosage, and a generic dosage of metalcore at that. The likes of Atreyu, Bullet For My Valentine and Trivium to name but a few come to mind, with the cliché song structure of screamed verses and sung choruses being a regular occurance. Liam Mountford‘s clean vocal inserts come across unconvincing, whereas drummer Sam Hankinson‘s attempts at screaming come out weak and full of pops. Inhales are this band’s biggest letdown.

Heights (**) on the otherhand are much more dominating and profound vocally, with frontman Thomas Debaere being the definite main focus of attention, full of conviction and passion in his words. Sadly the band suffer greatly from something that’s beyond their control; poor sound. Visually the band encapture great energy in songs like ‘Empires’ and ‘Worlds Apart’, but that full impact can’t be delivered in the same essence musically. Everything comes across mushy and sadly not to its full potential.

Things are shortly taken for a little bit more of a comical turn when House Vs. Hurricane (***) take to the stage to an old school dance track sample, before taking a more serious face and plunging straight into their set. Songs like ‘Forfeiture’ come across with an energy and finese live that’s difficult to even pick up upon on record, and cement them as a band who need to be seen and heard live before anyone writes them off. Their small stage space is noticeably restraining on the Australian 6-piece, but they managed to hold their own enough with their slightly early Enter Shikari-esque material.

The lightest and probably most ambient of the bunch are headliners, Flood Of Red (***). Frontman Jordan Spiers shows a sheer development in his vocals since the band’s 2009 debut ‘Leaving Everything Behind’, shining brightest through tracks ‘Like Elephants’ and ‘I Am The Speechless’, and bares resemblence to big names in the scene Jonny Craig and Craig Owens. The low numbers in the crowd seem to be reflecting back on the band, who’ve been seen much more energetic in the past than they’re allowing to showcase to the Stoke audience. Their tight, and well-polished sound stands above the earlier performances of the night, and their joining onstage for a drumming frenzy brings a pummeling end to what was sadly a night to be rated just above average.

Written by Zach Redrup