No barrier, champagne and birthday cake. The Bronx at their absolute finest.
If reports were to be believed, The Bronx’s first night at The Underworld was a rightfully rowdy affair. Could they top that with a second sold out show? Will the next Pope wear a silly hat?
First up are Northern Ireland’s Axis Of and they warm up the crowd a treat with their bass heavy rock’n’roll and polite yet charming crowd interaction. The three-piece have a perfect mix of charisma, wit and quality songs that start off the night in fine fashion. Their sound more than fills out the still-filling Underworld and you’d be doing yourself a dishonour if you miss them the next time they’re over in April.
Canada’s Single Mothers are a much more scatty affair. They’re an ideal support for The Bronx with their lo-fi dirty punk rock but it seemed like it washed over the crowd a little bit tonight. Perhaps this is because really, they’re just standing in the way of what’s about to happen, you could choke on the anticipation in the air it’s that thick.
And now for the main event: The Bronx, ladies and gentlemen. Riling up the crowd early on, vocalist Matt Caugthran explains that although there was a barrier last night, he emailed none other than Jason Statham to sort it out for tonight. Needless to say Mr Statham pulled through – there’s no barrier and from the first note of ‘The Unholy Hand’, chaos ensues. If you were hoping for a quiet one, you better run, fast, in the opposite direction.
Sounding tighter than ever the band waste no time going straight into ‘White Tar’ and ‘Shitty Future’ and the crowd goes utterly berserker. New songs ‘Under The Rabbit’ and ‘Too Many Devils’ sound even better in the live arena before the unstoppable ‘Inveigh’ smashes through everyone like the runaway punk-rock freight train that it is.
By this time, the crowd are at fever pitch and everyone, myself included, is losing their shit. The classic ‘Knifeman’ does nothing in terms of helping to stop this, only adding fuel to the fire. A helmet wearing, assless-chaps clad mystery man with ‘Pit Boy’ written on the back of his jacket has been stage diving for ages by now and like most people who get on a stage, didn’t know when to sod off. However that was a minor blip which even the band noted, quickly telling him where to go after the 150th time he was on stage.
Tonight was a special occasion for The Bronx as it was Matt’s 34th Birthday. He’s presented onstage with a birthday cake and a bottle of champagne and as could be expected, neither stay upright for long. The cake is straight in the crowd and the champagne is poured all over Matt’s head and the fun has only just begun. ‘False Alarm’ and ‘White Guilt’ see Matt getting right in the crowd, then flying around on top of everyone at an alarming rate. His banter with the audience tonight is absolutely next level and he is undoubtedly one of, if not the best frontman of his generation.
It’s all over too quickly if anything and The Bronx once again cement themselves as one of the finest live bands around. Full of fun and danger, there wasn’t one dull moment throughout tonight and a superb double finisher of ‘Heart Attack American’ and ‘History’s Stranglers’ send the crowd off exhausted yet thirsting for more. Let’s hope they’re back over soon and if they are, don’t dare miss it.
Massive thanks to Haaris and Emma @Public City \m/