This week I went the second time to a concert of the American rock band Slaves (US).
A while ago I saw them for the first time live and it was absolutely amazing. When I heard they would have another tour this year, I was more than happy. Unfortunately, the tour got postponed due to health issues of Jonny Craig (vocals). However, nothing is worse than ignoring health issues! Health comes definitely first, and it was great to see that his rest improved his health to the point that the band could announced new tour dates for their ‘Beautiful Death Tour’.
In addition to the new tour dates, Slaves (US), who now consists of Jonny Craig (vocals), Colin Vieira (bass) and Weston Richmond (guitar), released a new single ‘I’d Rather See Your Star Explode’ in January 2017 (via Artery Recordings) and announced a third full-length album ‘Beautiful Death’ for 2018.
The doors of the venue in Camden, leading the audience literally in The Underworld, where opened at around 7pm. The venue itself is quite a small club, with a capacity for around 1300 people. Hence, it creates a cosy and intimate vibe. Escalating down the stairs, the space of the club was divided into the bar, where all the merchandise tables were placed, and the actual concert room which itself was split into a small lower floor directly in front of the stage and a higher floor surrounding the rest while providing the viewer with a good overview of the stage and lower ground. The stage was connected to the surrounding higher floor.
The Concert in London at The Underworld was sold out. This evening, Slaves brought three special guests with them. The first band of the evening was the London based melodic hardcore band The City Is Ours, formed by Conor, Jay, George, Sam and Mikey in 2015. Their music was a mix between melodic choruses, combined with heavy dark verses and breakdowns in their bridges. The mix of screamed and clear vocals created a great vibe as well as energy, which the crowed seemed to enjoy.
After a short change, the second band entered the stage which was the Coventry based metal band Screaming Blue Murder. Re-formed in 2014, the band consists of Aaron (vocals) and Jamie (drums) Bloomer, Dan Philip (Guitar), Harry Goodwin (guitar, vocals) and Dan Myers (bass). After their EP ‘Cut Throat Youth’, the band released their debut album ‘Hollow Stories’ in 2016 via Stay Sick Records. Musically, they show influences of Attila, mixing mainly screamed vocals with a heavy dark guitar sound. Especially their presence on stage with monitors showing lyrics and pictures underlined their performance as well as the light boxes that turned on as soon as someone stepped on them. Unfortunately, the crowd this evening, which was quite mixed regarding the age, was really hard to motivate. Nevertheless, the band gave their best and delivered a very good show.
While preparing the stage for the third band, the US band Outline In Color from Tulsa Oklahoma, the band’s screamer Trevor Tatro used his strong voice to get the crowd back in front of the stage. The post-hardcore band was formed in 2010, but after slight changes in their line-up, they currently consist of Trevor Tatro (screamed vocals), See Jay Cochran (guitar), Michael Skaggs (bass) and Nick Tylor (drums). For the clear vocals they were supported by Michael Swank. So far, Outline In Color released four albums which are ‘Outline In Color’ (2010 self-release), ‘Jury Of Wolves’ (2012 via BRNK Records), ‘Masks’ (2014 via Standby Records) and ‘Struggle’ (2016 via Standby Records). Musically, they mix melodic, clear and screamed vocals in their verses and courses, underlined with heavy dark guitar sounds and electronic influences. Their performance was very energetic and kept the crowd moving. In the middle of their set, there was a quick change and Trevor announced a song of one of his band projects called Shamecult. At the end of their set, Trevor joined the crowd keeping them engaging and the energy high.
At around 9.30 pm, Slaves finally entered the stage. At that point the room was fully crowded and the audience hyped. Everyone sang along and engaged in the performance. The energy was great and everyone seemed to be happy. The band was absolutely amazing! Their performance was great. All the members had a lot of fun and enjoyed performing for the audience. They played a mix of some of their older songs, but also many of their upcoming songs of the new album – and they were amazing. Jonny’s voice was on point and the other band members performed great as well! Even though, they had a tiny issue with the technic, the motivation and energy staid high. Jonny entertained the crowd while the rest tried to fix the problem and then got back to playing the set. In the end there were many crowd surfers, even Colin and Felipe Sanchez (touring guitarist for Slaves) jumped with their instruments into the crowd and got carried. They all were very grateful and thanked the audience for having them and giving them such a great time – which was greatly appreciated by their fans who also thanked the band for their great performance.
The lighting for all four bands was very basic which created a great vibe and atmosphere. Only Screaming Blue Murder had additional screens and light boxed. The sound was surprisingly good. The mix between the instruments and vocals was clear and not too loud.
Overall, the concert was absolutely amazing. As Slaves is one of my favourite bands I was looking forward to this concert and I was definitely not let down. Their performance was great and Jonny’s vocals were better than ever! The crowd, however, was really hard to motivate at the beginning which gave the first bands quite a hard time. Nevertheless, their performances have been great as well and they enjoyed their time on stage. With Slaves on the stage, the crowd got absolutely crazy and sung on the top of their lungs which created an amazing atmosphere.
It was definitely a special time and I am looking forward to the new album in 2018 🙂
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