Biffy Clyro, The Bronx, The Audition, I Am Ghost
It’s that time of year again; when UK’s best selling rock magazine delves into a pick n mix of bands, and draws out an assortment of styles, before heaving them into renowned venues across the land to bring in the new year with as much noise as possible. This year’s roster was without a doubt, the most obscure yet.
Opening the evening were Long Beach’s Post Hardcore/Goth outfit, I Am Ghost. The concupiscent movements from what looked like a Satanist magician drew enough movement from the crowd to consider this performance a success. While I was more intrigued by the violinist’s ability to thrust her wrist back and forth faster than Sid from Skins wanking hand, I can’t deny that they got some action from the already sweat drenched audience. Sticky icky icky. Oo-ee!
Unfortunately, this is more than can be claimed from Chicago’s The Audition, whose mediocre set proved to be a perfect lullaby for many crowd dwellers. Frontman, Danny Stevens, as hard as he endeavoured to create some movement in the crowd, barely got more than an arm’s stretch from the yawning assembly. I won’t continue to focus on this band, as if I’m honest with you, my attention didn’t either.
Half way through the night now, and amongst others I’m beginning to question Kerrang’s choice of bands. Chants of “Mon’ the Biffy!” had already begun, and this was starting to simply resemble a Biffy Clyro tour. But before many punters had the chance to sleep off their boredom, LA’s The Bronx jolted everyone upright with their musical equivalent to a line of Charlie.
Viciously gorgeous riffs and yelps from a band that oozed character was a delight to hear in a room that was starting to overflow with glumness. The solid performance was amplified by superb frontman, Matt Caughthran, who spent as much time on stage as he did in the crowd. Intense gulps of a down to earth broth served up by this fantastic group make nights like this worthwhile.
But as Biffy Clyro mounted the stage like donning a raging bull, the jittery, powerful riff of recent download single, SemiMental, immediately tamed it. The Astoria had become transformed into a magnificent bouncy castle, or perhaps more like a dyslexic House of Pain concert? Either way, it was something else I tell you. Continuing to please the crowd with live favourites and cult classics, All The Way Down, and Toys Toys Toys, Choke, Toys Toys Toys, Biffy reigned supreme with an illustrious setlist that was delivered first class.
New single, Saturday Superhouse sounded wonderful live, and marked the gig as a enormous promotional tool for 4th studio album, Puzzle, which is to be released in the late spring. Unfortunately the night finished on a flat note with an early finish, and no time for desired encore. But looking back, they really didn’t need one. Le Biff are one step closer to becoming Scotland’s biggest export. And it’s phenomenal.
Photo by Katy Pigg