LIVE REVIEW: Kerrang! Tour ft. Sum41, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, ROAM, Biters, Albert Hall, Manchester, 18/02/2016
If you aren’t familiar with the annual hootenanny that is the famed Kerrang! Tour then where have you been? Living under a rock! Every year those dudes over at rock’s best known magazine bring us the best of the best in our generations new blood bands with a mix of rock royalty. Those lucky enough to open the show are generally tipped to be the next big thing in music!
This year’s opening band come in the form of Biters. It’s pretty clear from the offset that these guys take huge influence from the glam rock era: big hair, leather jackets and huge sounds. They kick off their set with Low Lives taken from their debut album Electric Blood. Their set is short at only five songs but they keep fans entertained with their catchy rock and roll anthems.
ROAM are the next of the new blood bands to entertain onlookers tonight. These Eastbourne natives pack a massive punch with their set. High energy and acrobatics from vocalist Alex Costello combined with huge guitar choruses are solid proof that ROAM are destined for big things. Having recently released their debut studio outing Backbone they are moving in the right direction very fast. They run through some of their newest tracks The Desmond Show and Warning Sign almost effortlessly.
As most people know by now, anything Frank Carter touches turns to pure gold. His latest and greatest venture to date, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, is no exception to the rule. Taking to the stage, the ever humble and down to earth frontman and his band run through a stonker of a set. These guys never falter when it comes to the sheer grit and aggression of their live performances. You can’t help but feel like you’re part of something really special when you see the Rattlesnakes. They open their set with Loss and it isn’t long before Frank is over the barriers and the crowd are following his every command. Circle pits ensue until the latter half of the set when things slow down as the haunting Beautiful Death is performed, shortly after the band close their set with I Hate You.
Approaching the final performance of the night we have the realisation that it was a whole fifteen years ago since those fresh faced teen punks Sum41 first appeared on the scene? It seems bizarre that after so many ups and downs; members leaving, rejoining, battles with addiction and personal turmoil that they return after leaving a massive void for so long. Once again at the top of their game they headline 2016’s festivities of the annual Kerrang! tour. After years of absence it seems like there is a massive hype over the return of Whibley and Co. Finally rejoined once again by original members such as Dave ‘Brownsound’ Baksh the band take to the stage as a far more solid and formidable force than they have being for over a decade!
Opening with Introduction to Destruction the band take to the stage of the prestigious Albert Hall one by one. All present and correct, the opening riffs of fan pleaser Over My Head (Better Off Dead) kick in and the venue begins to ooze with electricity. If one thing is for sure Sum41 still put on one hell of an energetic show, rallying through what can only be described as a ‘Greatest Hits’ performance they move straight onto another favourite in the form of Motivation which sounds album perfect. The night goes on and is full of various surprises and treats for fans, the first of these comes in the form of a cover of Rancid’s Ruby Soho and then with Queen’s We Will Rock You. The night wouldn’t be complete without an encore of the band’s debut Fat Lip which absolutely sets the room on fire.
Written by: Pat Gleeson
Photos by: Pat Gleeson