[Show date: 20th January 2018]
The industrial heartland of the UK, with its trademark grey skies welcomes toughened Alaskan wild-men 36 Crazyfists tonight and it seems the boys have brought the snow with them as flurries turn the sodden streets white.
The sold out UK tour rolls into Birmingham hot off the heels of the band’s critically acclaimed new album Lanterns, but that’s still to come. Up first are the extremely interesting ensemble ‘68. The two piece act of singer/guitarist and drummer are more energetic than most opening acts you’ll see.
The young lads in suits and dinner jackets produce a short but intense half hour set of angst ridden noise, hardcore meets radio rock, in an interesting fusion of sound. For me, despite being openers they steal the show, with their flamboyant display of magical style. I only hope i get to see them again soon.
That leaves All Hail The Yeti with a very hard act to follow. The more established support act tonight with their gruff, biker style in complete contrast to the previous act. Their metalcore outlook is perfectly suited to tonight’s headline act and they are the obvious choice for this tour.
Connor Garrity commands the stage with a powerful vocal performance. Rumbling bass, chunky riffs and anthemic choruses define the set which the fans lap up. Rounding out the 45 minutes they bring out Brock from headliners 36 Crazyfists, a crowd pleaser if ever I saw one.
Onto the main event, and we are back to those Alaskan boys. I remember where I was when I first heard their game changing Bitterness The Star album 16 years ago. In this band Roadrunner had found potentially the next big thing to take over the metal world. Whilst the band might not have reach the heights that I (and many others) expected of them, it’s good to see all these years later they can still pull in huge crowds and sell out venue after venue.
Last year the band, now on Spinefarm records, released Lanterns, their latest opus, to critical acclaim, and tonight they open the show with Death Eater from said release. A good third of tonight’s set is made of songs from the new album, a sign that the band are pleased with the fruits of their labour.
It’s not all new material however, the classics are also there in abundance. The juicy riffs of At The End Of August and groove laden We Gave It To Hell and Time and Trauma to name but a few. Brock Lindlow’s unique angry vocal stylings drive the sound, rounded out with nu-metal feelings and throbbing vibrant basslines.
The pit is a writhing mess of limbs all evening, and this continues through the encore, started by a rendition of Alice in Chains’ We Die Young and rounded out with Sleepsick and their major label debut masterpiece Eightminutesupsidedown. A thrilling way to end a magnificent evening.