Date: February 27th, 2011
Venue: Camden Underworld, London
Support: Letlive, Break Even, Stick To Your Guns
Website: None available
Two years ago, St. Albans hardcore crew Your Demise headlined this exact same venue. To some, this may perhaps show a lack of ambition or demise (no pun intended) in the band’s musical output. Neither of these statements are true however, as the band returned this year more fired up than ever on their sophomore record ‘The Kids We Used To Be…’, and armed with new vocalist Ed McRae, the band set out to tear up small club stages all over Europe, and that’s exactly what they did.
Up first though are Letlive (***), and anyone who is lucky enough to get in early is treated to frontman Jason Butler who leaps across the stage like a possessed madman, and often sounds like he is about to cry as he screams (often without a microphone) about the hardships of his upbringing. Musically, they’re sound enough, and their passionate post-hardcore goes down well amongst the front few rows. However, the antics of their frontman leave the rest of the crowd standing in awe; it is definitely a sight to behold.
Sadly, Australia’s Break Even (**) don’t manage to live up to the same standard. Credit to the band though where it’s due though, they manage to get the first reaction of any major sorts from the crowd, but on the whole their bland hardcore is often repetitive and dull, and certainly forgettable. The band isn’t helped by the poor sound that plagues their set, and they do deserve more credit for battling on throughout despite these problems.
Being forgettable is not something that California bulldozers Stick To Your Guns (****) have to worry about however, as soon as they hit the stage to some light hearted Mariachi music, the chaos can begin. The stage is awash with bodies flying everywhere. Highlights of the set include impassioned run-throughs of ‘Enough Is Enough’ and ‘Amber’, and the mass stage invasion that greets ‘This Is More’ causes utter carnage, including one stage diver managing to knock the venue air conditioning from the ceiling.
However, the definition of carnage will never be understood unless you see Your Demise (*****) in a tiny club venue such as the Underworld. As soon as they arrive on stage and kick into ‘MMX’, Ed is right in there with the crowd and running across the stage. After bursting through a pulsating ‘Scared Of The Light’, cue the first stage invasion of the night as ‘Shine On’ pounds into life. Despite some sound problems, songs like ‘Miles Away’ and ‘Nothing Left But Regret’ still sound huge in the tiny surroundings.
This show also marks the filming of the band’s new music video for ‘Life Of Luxury’, and as assumed, more chaos ensues, at one point there are so many stage divers that it causes the aforementioned air conditioning vent to be torn clean from off the ceiling, with those below it holding pieces of it like trophies. A hectic ‘Kids We Used To Be’ topped off by the ever present ‘Burnt Tongues’ marks what really was an astonishing set, and seals a great night in North London.
Written by Oliver Thompson