Live Review: Royal Blood, Concrete Surfers

21 July 2017 | 1:41 pm | Mick Radojkovic

"The music of Royal Blood was unrelenting. Kerr was a confident showman, with maybe a touch too much bravado, but we didn't mind."

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"We drove 12 hours and we're so pumped to be here." Concrete Surfers had driven themselves (and their outlandish haircuts) down from Brisbane for their biggest support slot yet. How did they get chosen for the one and only Royal Blood sideshow? That's a good question, but they made a decent fist of it. Singer Jovi Brook had a seemingly good voice, but it was lost in the mix. Bass player Trent Courtenay smashed a beer can on his head among other theatrics and once early nerves were soothed, they enjoyed their 30-minute slot. The crowd accepted them without getting too pumped.

We were, however, extremely pumped for the duo from Brighton to assault our eardrums. Mike Kerr and Ben Thatcher, aka Royal Blood, strolled on stage with an almost carefree curiosity. Thatcher swigged a beer and assumed his place behind his kit, kicking into the beat from Where Are You Now?

There was an interesting mix in the crowd. Younger girls moshed among the middle-aged men and neither held back their love for the riff-based guitar rock. Speaking of the guitar, it is still some sort of pedal black magic that Kerr's bass can sound like a guitar one second, a bass the next or just a combo of both. The six amplifiers behind him reflected the complexity of his creations and we gave up trying to work it out.

Three of the first four tracks were from the new album and they were well received, but when Little Monster kicked in the crowd reached fever pitch. Flailing arms, bodies and sweat filled the dancefloor. Blood Hands calmed us down a little before the crowd called for Thatcher to scull his beer. He looked back at the chanting crowd inquisitively, apparently unaware of this strange Aussie chant of "drink it down, down, down". We needn't have worried though as we were treated to our newer obnoxious custom of a 'shoey' later in the show.

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The music of Royal Blood was unrelenting. Kerr was a confident showman, with maybe a touch too much bravado, but we didn't mind. Thatcher was his straight man, but even he cracked a few smiles throughout the night. Out Of The Black wrapped up a powerful, hit-laden set and at just over an hour, it was only just enough. Royal Blood are just one step away from worldwide stardom and the Metro probably still has sweat dripping off the walls.