Red Fang: The most entertaining band in heavy rock storm the Electric Ballroom, London
The last time this writer had the pleasure of catching a Red Fang show was at the tiny Underworld in Camden, which was hot, sweaty and marvelously loud and the perfect little hovel like club to catch a grizzly bunch of beery stoner rockers.
@ Electric Ballroom, Camden 21.03.2014 They were superb that night, and thus there’s palpable excitement about seeing them again, this time in the much bigger, loftier and sold out Electric Ballroom, which is heaving at the slightly daft early hour of 8:30, when Red Fang’s set sadly begins a full ten minutes before we get there.
Whales & Leeches, the band’s current and third album, was a marked contrast from their first two very similar yet excellent records, and finds the band playing shorter, more abrasive and punkier tracks which come across really well live, but it’s the older repertoire which really gets the crowd jumping. The darker palm muting of the simply brilliant ‘Throw Up’ overlaid with QOTSA-esque guitar riff nearly blows the roof off and paves the way for raucous, gutsy renditions of ‘Hank Is Dead’, ‘Wires’ (which is the highlight of the show) and lively set closer and fan favourite ‘Prehistoric Dog’.
It’s impossible to dislike to Red Fang, there’s something endearing about them and the honesty of their music, the hard graft to get there, the relentless touring, the sense of humour which pervades their videos, the not taking yourselves too seriously and it comes across on stage too, and later in the Black Heart when the band breeze in and are quite happy to chat to anyone. Of the gig tonight, the set is short but flawless, the band on stage so clearly enjoying themselves rubs off on the crowd and it’s hard to find any real criticism of the performance at all, other than starting too bloody early, but that’s hardly the band’s fault. Consider your wrists slapped, Electric Ballroom. 9/10
www.redfang.net With huge thanks to Becky Laverty