Last week saw Lower Than Atlantis round off their incredible tour in Cardiff's Great Hall. With Roam, Hands Like Houses and Young Guns in support this was set to be one hell of a night!
Opening with 'Cabin Fever' Eastbourne pop punkers Roam make their short set a worthwhile one. The song comes in at 100mph and 'All The Same' continues at a similar velocity.
'Warning Sign' and 'Head Rush' follow to keep everyone moving before 'Deadweight' proves as a mosh-worthy favourite from the growing crowd. It is a shame that when they drop 'Hopeless Case' it is their last song of the night as it feels they are really starting to get into the set. As the reverb rings out after they have finished they leave a fully charged crowd ready for Hand Like Houses. Roam have played support on a tonne of shows in the UK including the likes of pop punk giants Sum 41 and this tour they find themselves on with Lower Than Atlantis. With a main support slot on the upcoming As It Is tour through the US It would be great to see them make a step up and start making an even bigger name for themselves.
Hands Like Houses take to the stage and sound massive right from the off. A couple of pitch issues doesn't stop 'Great Havens' from warming up the crowd suitably. Vocals are on point on 'Glasshouse' and by this point it feels like Trenton Woodley has really come into his element with the band with him in full force. 'Colourblind' brings with it the reaction you would expect and when the chorus drops the crowd are wholly on board. Last song 'I Am' hits with its punchy rhythm, roaring guitars and drums that make your heart ripple. It finishes off a really strong set.
Tonight really felt as if Hands Like Houses had a fire in their bellies. A fire that is found from a band that have toured relentlessly. Having hit the UK on quite a few tour runs now we can only hope the next time we see this band it is on a headline show.
Young Guns take to the stage with an epic intro track playing through the monitors, its a shame that opening song 'Mad World' falls a bit flat in comparison. The band ease in golden oldie 'Weight Of The World' far better and it shows from the crowds reaction.
Young Guns have always been a band teetering on the fence between senseless radio rock and passionate alternative rock without any material really deviating. So when Gustav Wood shouts "Cardiff, Are You With Me!!!!" it falls largely on deaf ears as they play 'Buried' (one which falls on the radio rock side). All is going smoothly at least... that is until Wood misses half of the lyrics in the 2nd verse to catch his breathe.
'Bulletproof' is a little more like it and the song comes across well on the whole. Unfortunately vocals are pretty weak but it can be overlooked after the previous two offerings. 'Dearly Departed' is a very welcomed listen. A seasoned song in the bands arsenal and it shows. Back when Young Guns were kicking ass this song was one of the reasons why.
'Bones' is the next song that wakes the crowd up. The drums are turned up high which drowns out the majority of guitars on the song that is until the break where it goes off and Gustav sings every word. It is here where you can see why Young Guns have managed to get to where they stand today. 'I Want Out' rounds off the set and it is easy to see why the song has been their most successful to date.
Young Guns have been kicking it a while now and despite album 'Bones' being an absolute banger they never seem to carry it off live. Why? Vocalist Gustav Wood just simply fucks up too much or interacts with the crowd instead of belting out the song. When you can hear the backing vocals clearer you know its not a good sign.
Lower Than Atlantis come out swinging on this last day of the tour. 'Had Enough' opens the set as well it opens the album despite the natural teething issues they faced with sound and tuning it tears the Great Hall apart. 'Dumb' carries the momentum well.
"Hey wheres that girl I met in the queue earlier, oh there she is, its Emily" Mike Duce wails before smashing out the ridiculously catchy 'Emily' which sends the crowd into an all singing all dancing machine. Every time LTA perform Mike has managed to introduce 'Emily' in a different, it's very comical and impressive. 'Aint No Friend' follows and leads into the feel-good banger'Way Worse'. Its one thing to hear a song nailed live, its another thing for it to lift the spirits of the room, this song did so.
'Stays The Same', 'Get Over It' and 'Criminal' follow in suit with the incredible plain white sheet that is their backdrop lighting up with images of the band in crazy colours and cool patterns/lights. 'Beech Like The Tree' is a welcomed addition to the set for old-school fans too. Mike follows by giving a quick lesson on the chorus to 'Work For It' before the band kicks in. The mosh pit is in full flow at this point. 'Words Dont Come Easily' goes down a storm too. The crowd sound like thunder when Mike lets them sing "Open Mouth, scream and shout, nothing out." 'Boomerang' ends the initial set with a bang (That song is a serious grower).
Mike returns to the stage to thank all the bands on the tour as well as the amazing fanbase. He makes an interesting point in saying that to become a musician is getting more and more difficult and he is right. It is a sobering thought that makes you hugely appreciative of the support here tonight... Queue 'Another Sad Song' that pulls the last raw, sweaty emotion out of everyone. Pausing for a band/crowd photo before busting out 'English Kids In America' and finally slamming out 'Here We Go' rounds off a very very good night.
LTA seemed exhausted (it is the last night of tour) but good god did they round it off to one hell of a crowd with every ounce of energy they had left. The band have fully cemented themselves onto the pedestal they now stand. Onwards and upwards from here!