With not much of a surprise when I arrive at the Electric Ballroom the queue of fans outside is already pretty long, and I patiently wait with them for the doors to open. This is the second night that they play in London and it is also sold out. Needless to say, that the room fills up quite quickly and everyone is ready for the night of their life!
French progressive metalcore band, Novelists, are the first ones to get on stage making sure to warm up the crowd for the main act. The band was founded in Paris in 2013 by brothers Amael and Florestan Durand. Novelists’ sound is described as metalcore, with guitar styles heavily inspired by progressive metal and djent, relaying on clean vocals rather than screamed vocals which are uncommon for metalcore.
Tonight, they are a last-minute addition, after Miss May I pulled out and the pressure is definitely on. As soon as they hit the stage, it is pretty clear that they are the right band to open the night and greet us all with their 9-songs set. They are on fire on that stage and the mixes of electric grooves and metalcore madness make us all realise that the band has both a soft and a loud side. For this UK side of the EU tour, they have a temporary vocalist Kubrick, as Tobias Rische could not make it. But don’t let this fool you as Kubrick is more than capable to make it justice and a great entertainer for the crowd, in fact at one point he gives the start to a guitar battle in which Florestan Durand and Pierre Danel show off all their talents in a funny battle.
In the end, they might be well known as everyone else playing here tonight, but they left their mark and I’m sure we will hear again from them.
Moving on, it is now the turn of the American metalcore band from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, August Burns Red. The band was founded in 2003 when all the members were attending high school and there is no other band like them. They stand for uncompromising breakdowns shows around the world and even a position in the American top 10. No one else had such an influence on modern metalcore as August Burns Red have.
As they step on the stage they are welcomed with almighty applause and scream which is a perfect way to start, with “Chop Suey” playing over the speakers. Most of the people in the crowd are super excited the see them and the ones in the first row keep elongating their arms as they want to touch them and make sure they are real. And August Burns Red are giving it their all with opening tracks including “Vengeance and Bloodletter”, and also incredible songs from their back catalogue and newest album, “Guardians”. During the first few songs, lead singer Jake Luhrs is encouraging the crowd to open a mosh-pit in the middle of the room and by doing this, fans are keeping security busy with a constant stream of crowd surfers as the set is moving on.
This is, without a shadow of a doubt, a powerful set with a great performance from the band with the crowd singing loudly during the entirety of it in a sign of gratefulness. Moreover, it was really nice to see that both Jake and Matt Grenier after the set come off the stage to chat and take photos with fans!
The wait is almost over, and British metalcore band from Southampton, Bury Tomorrow is taking the stage by storm. The band formed in 2006 and so far, they have released six studio albums, with the most recent, “Cannibal”, released in July 2020. Their first full-length piece of work since they kickstarted their new chapter early this year, will be released at the end of March 2023 and will be called “The Seventh Sun”. And with the new single “Abandon Us” released in early October, they started one of the year’s biggest tours since its announcement.
As I’ve seen Bury Tomorrow quite a few years ago at Slum Dunk Nord, I am very excited to see if their sound has changed over the years.
As the band launches into the first song of the set, the crowd is singing back at them just as loud with lead vocalist Daniel Winter-Bates almost “spitting out” the chorus and jumping on top of the risers showing us who is in charge. Daniel encourages the crowd to form a mosh pit during most of their songs while the band is taking every inch of the stage.
As for August Burns Red, the security is aware that the Bury Tomorrow set will give them even more work to do as the crowd surfers keep coming non-stop for the whole duration of the set, which is a classic experience that you will see at a Bury Tomorrow live show. All of this is clearly a sign that the band is killing it tonight! Even if the new single “Abandon Us” has just been released, fans already know every single word and they show it by singing back at the band.
Bury Tomorrow is clearly a band that enjoys the emotions of playing in front of their fans and this is equally reciprocated by expressing the satisfaction for the band’s music and live performances of this would not be a sold-out show!
Bury Tomorrow managed to put up a show that took all of us to another dimension, so make sure to catch them alive when they are coming to a town near you, I know you won’t regret it!
August Burns Red Setlist:
- Chop Suey (System of a Down cover)
- Invisible Enemy
- Back Burner
- Marianas Trench
- White Washed
Bury Tomorrow Setlist:
- The Grey (VIXI)
- Black Flame
- LIFE (Paradise Denied)
- Abandon Us
- The Age
- Better Below
- Man on Fire
- DEATH (Ever Colder)