Kerrang brought its annual K! Tour back to Cardiff on February 13th with a line up showcasing four bands from differing genres, but who all have one thing in common: they pack one hell of a punch live. Beartooth, Bury Tomorrow, We Are The In Crowd and headliners Don Broco concluded this year’s line up, with surprise act Young Guns making a brief appearance spanning three songs. Considering the Kerrang Tour’s history of rambunctious crowds and heavy-hitting bands, how would their 2015 attempt go down?
I enter Y Plas to the start of Beartooth: the venue is visibly packed and already alive with energy. The hardcore band from Ohio managed to spark the crowd into jumping and moshing at their first song. Even after having only released one album Beartooth seem to have a solid UK following, and the heavy screams coupled with their infectious choruses send the room into frenzy. You could be mistaken for thinking this was the headline act by the crowd reaction. Polishing off a couple songs to great praise they soon end their set on ‘Body Bag’, a clear favourite of the crowd, instigating a mass sing along from the room. These guys certainly set the precedent for the night.
British melodic metalcore band Bury Tomorrow take to the stage, again to outstanding appraise. “It’s time to f...... move!” screams lead singer Daniel Winter-Bates before they explode straight into their first song ‘Man On Fire’. For the duration of their set the band strut the stage with immense confidence, producing breakdowns so heavy that even the WATIC fans can’t help but to jump in the mosh. Winter-Bates is an insanely charismatic lead, taking every opportunity to talk to the crowd. The energy by both the crowd and band is unmatched, with bodies flying around the room as the last song ‘Lionheart’ plays out a phenomenal set.
As a special treat to this Kerrang Tour, English rockers Young Guns grace the stage to promote their new album ‘Ones and Zeros’. They smash through new singles ‘I Want Out’ and ‘Speaking in Tongues’, before rounding off their short but sweet set with the massive hit ‘Bones’. The calibre of their new material and the crowd’s zealous reaction to this surprise proves this was a smart move by Kerrang, and also that we can be expecting big things to come from Young Guns.
Having recently moved into a more rock-ish style of punk pop, New York’s We Are The In Crowd are still notably the lightest act on the bill for the night. Storming onto the stage they waste no time in running through some of their many hits. “More energy please! We’ve played this room before and we’ve seen crazier shit” says lead singer Tay Jardine after their songs so far get little enthusiasm from the crowd. ‘Dreaming Out Loud’ and ‘Lights Out’ then seem to receive a bit more attention, as the band continues with the utmost energy and style. WATIC have indeed headlined this venue before (and have indeed seen ‘crazier shit’), however tonight they accept there may be a bit of a genre gap. This doesn’t faze them though, slowing things down with ‘Come Back Home’ before bringing back their energetic sound with ‘Reflections’. Playing a mix of songs from all three of their studio releases fans of WATIC have had a set to remember, with Tay jumping onto the barrier to sing their final song ‘Rumour Mill’.
A change of backdrop from the official “Kerrang Tour 2015” banner to a plain white sheet indicates Don Broco are soon to arrive. There’s a buzz amongst the crowd and as the band steps out, the room erupts. New single ‘Money Power Fame’ kicks off the show, hitting the audience with a wall of powerful guitars, dominant drums and the smooth, yet strong, vocals of lead singer Rob Damiani. It’s evident right away that Broco have become accustomed to larger scenes, with their energy and noise almost being too much to be contained by the walls of Y Plas. Other newbie ‘Fire’ gets played after a few more from debut Priorities, with the lyrics being sung so loudly by the crowd that the band almost needn’t join in. Swaggering around the stage, ‘Whole Truth’ is cracked out much to the excitement of the audience, whose unbroken energy matches that of the band. This energy is something Don Broco are famous for, apparent more than ever when old favourite ‘Thug Workout’ is played and the now compulsory “Push up pit” is initiated. Don Broco clearly know their set like the backs of their hands and know how to work a crowd into a sweat, though the band themselves remain cool and calm. The final new track of the night ‘Superlove’ is met with acclaim, before the night is rounded off with Broco classics ‘Priorities’ (accompanied by the obligatory “Broco Walk”) and ‘You Wanna Know’, where the last remaining amount of energy from the crowd is drained out. “Cardiff you’ve been f...... amazing” they exclaim as they leave the stage, looking as cool as when they arrived but leaving behind them a wake of mosh-fuelled destruction.
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