The night kicked off with The Hallows. They’re a local Milton Keynes three-piece alt-pop band, so nowhere near as heavy as Devilskin, but despite that the audience gave them a good reception. It’s slightly odd not having a guitarist there – they just had a drummer, bassist and keyboard player/singer. Most of the time it worked well, but in one song it just didnt really work as they were 100% reliant on a backing track They had a technical problem when they tried to use a keytar, and while that was being dealt with, the other two played a bit of the Star Wars cantina music which was a nice touch and a good way to keep the crowd entertained while the issues were being worked on. Once the problem was fixed then they were able to play the next song, and that puzzled me – Sarah Rodriguez switched from her keyboards to a keytar for no obvious reason. Normally a keytar is used to allow the player to move around, but as she sings she was stuck in the same place, thus negating it’s only benefit.
Next came The Fallen State. They’re the main support on this tour and are much heavier than The Hallows. They certainly go down well with the crowd as they put in a good solid set that gets the crowd nicely warmed up for Devilskin.
Devilskin came next and the two flightcases in the pit were a sign that the band like to get close to their fans and it’s not long before Nail and Paul are racing forward as they play, and stand on the cases just inches from the fans. That’s a sign of things to come – the band love to move around, and Nail and Paul (guitar and bass respectively) are constantly racing around. Singer Jennie Skulander is also very active – this is a band that don’t need to visit the gym, they get enough of a workout on stage.
Coming from New Zealand, Devilskin seem to tour the UK more regularly than many UK bands – they are clearly prepared to work hard and build their fanbase here and it seems to be working as there’s a good turnout here tonight. The fact they’ve recently toured supporting Halestorm and are going to be supporting Slash on his New Zealand dates should tell you how good they are.
It’s a high energy show and from start to finish the band never stop racing around as they play one great song after another. Among their own songs they also include a cover version – a great rendition of the Heart classic, Barracuda. It’s a great performance and I can’t help thinking it won’t be long before they move up to bigger venues for their UK tours – certainly they’ve got the talent, they’re prepared to work hard, and have the drive to succeed.
A great performance from Devilskin.