Bury Tomorrow

support Eight Tide Suicide + The Valiant + Drawings + Burn The Fleet
author BL date 24/09/10 venue Joiners, Southampton, UK

With Southampton effectively becoming my new home now after almost three and half years, this was the definitive local home show of the new season considering all bands playing tonight originating from the city and Bury Tomorrow becoming getting bigger day by day having recently getting themselves on the roster of UK bands that have managed to tour over the Atlantic in the US. It doesn't really need me to say any more that I was looking forward to tonight no less. I had seen Bury Tomorrow before, but back they had yet to make that leap across the pond and I wondered what touring the grand sights of the USA would have done to change the band.

Eight Tide Suicide

Having seen these guys only the week before, what I caught of their last performance was still relatively fresh on my mind. There was nothing particular different to seperate what I can see here from then, except at least this time there were no technical problems keeping them back. As a result there was a bit more energy in their performance, and the sound also seemed a little cleaner. I still maintain that the vocalist Louis is the best part of the band, his screams carrying a little more weight today, and he also seemed to be in better spirits today as a result of the better showing - at one point taking the action to the crowd when they formed the first wall of death of the night. All in all I can safely grade them this time unlike the last, better than what I saw before - but still early days I think.

6

The Valiant

The Valiant are a metalcore band from Southampton that I have yet to see, and I must admit that I wasn't terribly excited by their sound from a quick skim on myspace before the show - a sort of more simpler form of the kind of progressive metalcore I'm used to hearing from so many other bands. But live, well they turned out to be a different kettle of fish than I had anticipated. The sound was thick and radiant, as even though the music wasn't terribly complex, the nice melodies during the more melodic sections gave a decent contrast to the heavier sections dominated by vocalist Ben's screams. The other thing that also shifted the mood were some good clean vocals from the guitarist Si who managed to get my head nodding to some of the catchier singing sections. To be fair the soft heavy interplay wasn't anything out of the ordinary when I look back on it (especially considering who these guys are opening for), but I admit I enjoyed the solidarity of it all in action. And it was great to see the crowd agree with me whole heartedly.

7

Drawings

It's not surprising that sometimes you will get the odd act out of the bunch on the night that might be in a totally different genre. Drawings basically had little musical similarities compared to the other bands, being closer to alternative indie rock. It was a three piece that had the guitarist/lead vocalist Aaron crooning some impressive clean vocals out over a backdrop of bass and drumming with his guitars adding some delicately balanced chords and light melodies here and there when necessary before cranking out some of the thicker and louder sections (basically good use of dynamics). To be honest most of what Drawings played wasn't the sort of thing you'd see me or some others here actively listen to (and they probably knew it by asking the crowd for a "Wall of Love" that had hugs instead of barging elbows and shoulders). They definitely weren't bad though and I felt what I heard was pretty decent if not a little hard to individualise song by song except for "Sloth" (I didn't really managed to hear many other song names which didn't help), it had some sweet lead guitar riffing and a pretty catchy chorus while maintaining a nice steady beat - definitely a song worth checking out when I get home.

Burn The Fleet

Another local favourite of many here, I had seen Burn The Fleet once before (and on that night they were supporting Bury Tomorrow as well) and to be frank, they were great that time. Lead vocalist/bassist Andrew leads the band (sporting an "I <3 Southampton" shirt), in wasting no time in getting right into the usual opener "Nautilus" with those lyrics "Prepare the Sails!" and the crashing waves of guitars that go back fourth between darker verses to the smooth melodic choruses. It brings that last memorable perfomance I saw straight back to mind - and surpass it in almost every way. The instrumentals are impressive live just like how I remember them with guitarists Jack and James cranking out the riffs with ease and delight - except now I know the songs so I can appreciate it more. And if you were in the crowd and you didn't know the words to the choruses, you will have by the end as almost all of them have that memorable singalong that gets stronger and stronger. My personal favourites "Fictional Children", "The Greatest Fire" and the expected fantastic closer "Handfuls Of Sand" were definitely the highlights - the crowd raising their voices tenfold compared to all the acts who have been on previously tonight. Probably the best way to get everyone in the crowd excited before the headliners ended the show.

8

Bury Tomorrow

It was getting seriously packed in Joiners, and increasingly hot when Bury Tomorrow finally came onto the stage, to a rapturous reception. This is their home crowd, their home show, and having been playing abroad in the US for a while, one could imagine they might have missed such a great turnout just for them and all the cheers and excited yells running all the way to the back of the venue. Tonight was the first of two consecutive shows for the band at Joiners, but for me since that I wasn't attending the second night, I had very high expectations for Bury Tomorrow to not dissappoint since I'd be unhappy to get that feeling of missing out on something special they might save for the second night. The band didn't really spare much time before heading straight into their album opener "Confessions", the chugging intro guitars tearing through the air as the floor erupted literally into mayhem. Bodies were moving everywhere and the volume of the crowd singing back the lyrics threatened to overtake the band at times - as soaring as guitarist/singer Jason's excellent as always voice was. Danni's presence as the frontman was as commanding as ever too, plenty of people throwing arms up to wherever he stood over the crowd, and it must have been something to see so many scream along with him.

The band played two tracks from their new batch of songs which were recently released in the UK as the "Waxed Wings" EP, otherwise being the bonus songs on the US version of the debut album "Portraits", namely "The Western Front" and the great tapped guitars of "Waxed Wings" late on. Otherwise the set was actually somewhat short, and they still didn't play "Factory Of Embers" which is one of my favourite tracks on the album. But the usuals were all there (except for "Anything With Teeth", which used to be a regular) like "Her Bones In The Sand", the always amazing "These Woods Aren't Safe For Us", "The Evolution Of Self" and "You & I". The band by now, the fourth time I have seen them, look so seasoned when I compare them to the first time I saw them three years ago. Everything about the performance was just utterly explosive, eye catching, and just a sheer blast from the start to finish. Like the second time in just over a week, the main act ends on a cover, and this time it is "Livin' La Vida Loca" originally of Ricky Martin. It's at least a fairly light hearted way to end the set and by that point there were a lot of tired looking people in the crowd. I think by then everyone including the band wanted to get out of the venue just to be able to breathe and get fresh air again because the atmosphere had reached such a boiling point long beforehand. It did make for one hell of a show I must say though, even if it was damn hot.

Setlist:

01. Confessions

02. Her Bones In The Sand

03. The Western Front

04. These Woods Aren't Safe For Us

05. The Evolution Of Self

06. You & I

07. Waxed Wings

08. Casting Shapes

Encore:

09. Livin' La Vida Loca

Photos courtesy of Lauren Harris. To see the rest of the photos check out Lauren Harris Photography's facebook page.

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