Tonight’s gig at the o2 Academy was going to be a belter Skindred. Therapy?, Black Spiders and local support from Yashin as part of the Jägermeister Music Tour. At £5 a ticket plus the usual fee’s it’s the best bargain of 2012!
Black Spiders are opening tonight which seems a bit odd, however I’m sure the guys will kick off the night in true Black Spider style and get the crowd going.
The Black Spiders come on during the intro track from ‘The Good The Bad and Ugly’ and launch into ‘Stay Down’. Mark ‘Dark Shark’ had an issue with his guitar however this did not deflect from the show in any way. Towards the end of the song vocalist Pete ‘Spider’ stopped the song and asked the crowd to raise their middle fingers in the air and shout out ‘Fuck you Black Spiders’ if you’ve seen the Spiders before you know they normally ask the crowd to do this during this song, as always this gets a lot of the crowd participating they then played ‘Black Tie’ while they leaped, bounced, mosh and danced in the limited available space that they had!
Next up is their current single ‘KISS Tried to Kill Me’ which goes down well with the crowd a lot of people are singing along especially during the chorus. They dedicate their next song to all the ladies in the audience and launch into ‘Just Like a Woman’ they really get the crowd going during this song. ‘Wolves’ and ‘Blood of the Kings’ bring their set to a close far too quickly their 30 minutes have just flown by.
The guys are on great form tonight and are playing their normal hyper, tight powerful set none of them stay still for a more than a few seconds even Tiger Si the drummer who’s facial expressions are so comical and he is like a mini ‘Animal’ behind his kit and popping up every so often to help encourage the crowd on. It was a superb start to the evening.
KISS Tried to Kill Me
Just Like a Woman
Blood of the Kings
Black Spiders – Picture Gallery
Yashin well what can you say, it’s definitely a split crowd as far as the local support is concerned. After the Black Spiders leave the stage along with a lot of the crowd heading to the bar and the Yashin fans head to the front.
If you haven’t heard of Yashin before they hail from Greenock near Glasgow and area Post-Hardcore style band. They have 2 vocalists Harry Radford who does the clear vocals and Kevin Miles he’s the screamer and shouter, giving them a distinctive sound. They have had a lot of publicity, superb support slot inc. Papa Roach, Korn, Black Veil Brides as well as playing Download, Nova Rock festivals over the last 2 years. I have never seen them play live before so I stay put to see what they can do within their 30 min set!
They head on stage during the intro to ‘Awake While I’m Asleep’ Dubstep Remix and start their set with ‘Mr. Hyde’ then ‘Get Loose’ they are very energetic on stage and they banter along with the crowd in between songs, even when a few people booed, they just laughed and shrugged it off and asked if everyone was here to enjoy themselves tonight.
They played their latest single ‘New Year or New York’ and they had a mini pit going down the front as well as the middle front section bouncing and moshing along. Next up was a new track ‘Runaway Train’ their fans where loving it. They close their set with ‘Down, But Homeward Bound’
The guys gave a fantastic performance, they knew they were facing a tough crowd however this did not deter them at all. They even won some of the crowd over with their powerful and lively set. They have great stage presence and they enjoyed bantering with the crowd in between the songs.
New Year or New York
Friends In High Places
Down, But Homeward Bound
Yashin – Picture Gallery
I’d interviewed Michael and Neil from Therapy? earlier in the evening and I had asked if they were playing any of the songs from their latest album ‘A Brief Crack of Light’ they said there was 4 or 5 tracks from the album being played so I was really looking forward to hearing the tracks played live as well as the older songs.
‘Teethgrinder ‘is the first track that Therapy? play and the guys are on great form however the sound in the Academy isn’t the best, it was slightly noticeable throughout the Black Spiders and Yashin sets however its more prominent during Therapy?. Michael and Andy are bouncing about the stage and they play ‘Ghost Trio’ and ‘Why Turbulence?’ from their latest album ‘A Brief Crack of Light’ both the new tracks are sounding fantastic live.
A definite old favourite with the crowd is up next ‘Die Laughing’ this really gets the crowd at the front bouncing along with the guys on stage. They dedicate the next 3 songs to David Cameron and serve up ‘Exiles’, ‘Get Your Dead Hand off My Shoulder’ and then ‘Living In The Shadow of the Terrible Thing’ Andy gets us to sing the chorus with him during ‘Living in’.
Next up is ‘Lunacy Booth’ and they have a treat in store for us as Lesley Rankine joins the guys on stage to sing her parts of the tracks. If you’re a Therapy? fan then this is stunning to see and hear. Leslie runs off stage once her part is done before Andy has a chance to thank her for joining them.
The final 2 songs go down the best with the crowd and really set us all up for Skindred coming on next. ‘Nowhere’ and then ‘Screamager’ sees the majority of us all singing and bouncing along.
As always Therapy? delivers a solid, tight set and for me I really enjoyed hearing the new tracks live and happy to report they sounded fab. It was a great mix of old and new songs it’s just a shame it was over so quickly.
Get Your Dead Hand off My Shoulder
Living In The Shadow of the Terrible Thing
Therapy? Picture Gallery
The crowd has thinned out a bit for Skindred which seems a bit strange however it’s just after 10pm so some people are heading off to catch buses and trains home.
The house lights dim and the first bars of ‘Thunder Struck’ reverberate around the Academy with the feeling of anticipation growing as the guys take to the stage during the Imperial March and launch into the bouncy ‘Roots Rock Riot’ and then ‘Ratrace’ they have the crowd bouncing along and the party atmosphere that Skindred always manages to create was definitely present tonight! ‘Stand For Something’ has the crowd singing and jumping along with the band.
They know how to work the crowd getting a singing/shout off between each side. They play the intro and first verse of ‘State of Emergency’ before delving into ‘Destroy The Dancefloor’ with the crowd having a superb time same as during ‘Pressure’. Up next is ‘Game Over’ and ‘Nobody’ bring the main part of the set to a close both songs going down superbly with the crowd and Benji encouraging the crowd to bounce and dance about.
The crowd has really thinned out now as its 11pm so having to leave before the end of the set, which is what I had to do as well so I never missed the last train home. Leaving before they come back on stage for their encore and not hearing ‘Trouble’ and ‘Warning’ especially missing out on the big bounce from the floor, if you’ve seen Sindred before you know exactly what I mean, and doing the ‘Newport Helicopter’ it feels like the gig was incomplete for me.
However the guys deliver a stunning set and they always get the crowd jumping and dancing along in true Skindred style!
The Jägermeister Music Tour is a fantastic idea as it gives people a chance to experience some of the great bands live and at a brilliant affordable price, no wonder most of the nights sold out so quickly. All the bands played great sets however Therapy? was my personal highlight of the evening with Skindred only losing out by a tiny margin as I missed out on my 2 favourite songs.
Stand For Something
State of Emergency (Intro / first verse only)
Destroy The Dancefloor
(Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It))
(Rudeboy For Life outro)
Skindred – Picture Gallery
My interview with Michael McKeegan and Neil Cooper from Therapy?