LIVE REVIEW: Blood Youth @ Boston Music Room, London (08/03/2019)

Credit: Olli Appleyard

Date: March 8th 2019
Venue: Boston Music Room, London
Support: Lotus Eater / Palm Reader


Before the opening band have even taken to the stage, the crowd inside North London’s Boston Music Room is absolutely heaving. Fresh off the back of their latest album release, ‘Starve’, which has received rave reviews across the board, Blood Youth will be finishing the UK leg of their tour here tonight.

First up are Glasgow’s Lotus Eater [6], and in case you weren’t aware, they’re very, very pissed off. Frontman Jamie McLees stomps about the stage and demands that everyone gets involved with such vigour and rage that you’d be too frightened to disagree with him.

There’s plenty of breakdowns to appease the rowdy amongst the audience, and new single ‘Mother’ swells like a tsunami. This is hardcore at its most aggressive and punishing, and at times it feels a little bit forced, but the crowd don’t seem to care one bit.

Palm Reader [8] are always a treat, and tonight is no exception. It seems the room has gotten even more packed, if that was possible, and fans clamour towards the stage as the opening bars of ‘Always Darkest’ ring out.

From Andy Gillan‘s techy guitars on ‘Internal Winter’ and the enormous epic that is ‘Coalesce’, through to mesmerising closer ‘A Lover, A Shadow’, there’s a lot of variety packed into a short but sweet set. Frontman Josh McKeown‘s vocals are as powerful as ever, and once again, it’s anyone’s guess as to why they’re still playing these tiny shows, so enjoy them while you can.

Having practically reinvented themselves on new album ‘Starve’, Blood Youth [8] have headed in a heavier direction, and appear to have won swathes of fans in the process. They emerge to the eerie backdrop of ‘{51/50}’, but waste no time getting to the meat of things, launching into rager ‘Spineless’ which causes a volcanic eruption in the sweatbox that is the front of the stage.

Despite having shed their ‘Beyond Repair’ skin in favour of a new, grittier one, the band haven’t forgotten their roots, with older tracks like ‘I Remember’ and the melodic opening section of ‘Closure’ still making an appearance in the setlist. These go down well with the crowd, but seem to lack the conviction and aplomb of the newer material – it’s evident that the likes of nu-metal ‘Nerve’ represent the music that this band really want to be performing, and when played alongside the older songs, it’s a display of not just diversion, but evolution.

If the look on the face of frontman Kaya Tarsus is any measure of success, then these guys surely have it made. With set closer ‘Starve’ ensuring the majority of the crowd leave with colossal bangovers, Blood Youth are quite simply one of the most promising bands in the UK, and now that they’ve finally found their niche, they look set to take the country by storm.