On the brink of releasing their fourth studio album, Band of Skulls bring high energy, supreme musicianship, and a hell of a lot of noise to a packed out Electric Ballroom.
The Southampton three-piece, fresh from playing tiny London venue The Lexington the previous night, were in a celebratory mood as they introduced the sweaty Camden crowd to several new tracks from upcoming album ‘By Default’.
The set got off to a slightly slow start with the crowd seemingly not over-responsive to back-to-back new songs in the form of ‘In love by Default’ and ‘Black Magic’. This soon changed however with the first chord of ‘I Know What I Am’ being greeted with enormous cheers and the colossal sound soon sending the mass of humanity into raptures.
From this point, new and old songs were intertwined together one after the other, keeping the pace and energy going strong. Crowd-pleasers ‘Light of the Morning’ and ‘Death by Diamonds and Pearls’ brought the main set to a close in rampant style, before the final sonic onslaught of ‘Killer’ and ‘Asleep at the Wheel’ made up the encore. Of all the new tracks, ‘Killer’ went down particular well, with its catchy, repetitive chorus and soaring guitars.
In this relatively small venue that could barely contain the band’s sheer noise and presence, you could really appreciate the raw talent and musical ability of the trio. Matt Hayward’s drumming, in particular, caught the attention as he drove this well-oiled rock and roll machine relentlessly on.
With several references from guitarist Russell Marsden to their forthcoming LP, the band are undoubtedly excited about its release and what the future holds. Marsden has described the new album ‘By Default’ as “a new era” for the band in which they have “really let our imagination let rip”. Could this be the album that catapults Band of Skulls to the stadium-sized rock superstars that their sound craves? Their Electric Ballroom performance would resoundly suggest so.
Support for the night came from former Tribes frontman Johnny Lloyd. Lloyd is about to drop debut EP ‘Dreamland’ produced by The Maccabees’ Hugo White and Jamie T. His discernible song writing ability and assured stage presence made for a great opening to proceedings, with brilliant tracks ‘Pilgrims’ and ‘Hello Death’ rousing the crowd and setting the mood perfectly for what was to follow.
Band of Skulls upcoming UK live dates – click here for tickets.
28 May – Liverpool, Sound City Festival
2 Jun – Kingston upon Thames, The Hippodrome
4 Jun – Cardiff, Cardiff City Stadium
22 Jul – Huntingdon, Secret Garden Party
29 Jul – Bude, Leopallooza
30 Jul – Derbyshire, Y Not Festival
31 Jul – Hackthorpe, Kendal Calling
5 Aug – Tunbridge Wells, Forgotten Fields
Pre-order ‘Dreamland EP’ by Johnny Lloyd: iTunes | Amazon | Google Play
Pre-order ‘By Default’ by Band of Skulls: iTunes | Amazon | Google Play