Following the release of the superb Black Flame earlier this year, Bury Tomorrow have been touring Europe extensively, stretching from eastern Poland in Warsaw to Paris, France in Western mainland Europe. Tonight, they end that four-week run back on home territory in London, bringing a multinational lineup with them in Crystal Lake, Cane Hill and metal veterans 36 Crazyfists.
The Japanese metalcore outfit Crystal Lake opened the evening’s proceedings, and right from the beginning vocalist Ryo Kinoshita is in perpetual motion, not stopping for a second during their beatdown-heavy music. There are rare moments of clean vocals in between screams and pig squeals, and there is definitely more of a hint of deathcore to their music than their self-proclaimed metalcore. They get a good reception from the gathering audience, and the first few rows of tonight’s crowd gladly oblige the invitation to throw their arms in the air and move.
“More Than Mortal” is the latest music video from Bury Tomorrow, off of Black Flame.
Cane Hill could be classed in a similar genre, yet their music and stage presence is less manic; the movements from vocalist Elijah Witt are assured and confident, and flanked by James Barnett on guitar and Ryan Henriquez on bass, they put on an engaging and energetic performance in a different way. Channelling sounds ranging from the hardcore of Palm Reader to the experimental guitar work of Dillinger Escape Plan, their music has constant forward momentum and the greatest of intangible qualities in metal; undeniable heaviness.
36 Crazyfists come on stage next to a reception befitting the 24-year veterans, and by the time their set reaches 2000s metalcore staple “Bloodwork,” the entire audience is singing and bouncing along as if they were headlining. It’s a triumphant set from the Alaskan four-piece, blending their excellent newer material with the classics, finishing with “Slit Wrist Theory,” an early 2000s anthem that has bludgeoned through many metal bar. The crowd bounce and sing along with frontman Brock Lindow, drowning him out at times, and it’s a fitting end to the evening’s support for tonight’s main event. During their set, the following Bury Tomorrow’s Daniel Winter-Bates describes them as the “fathers of metalcore” and 36CF have certainly put on a performance to deserve that moniker.
Check out some of Chris Andrews’ photos from the show!
Bury Tomorrow’s stage setup of lighting and backdrop is more akin to that of an arena tour than the sold-out modestly sized venue they are playing this evening. Right from the beginning, opening as Black Flame does with “No Less Violent,” the audience lap up the performance in front of them, with the floor immediately a swirling mass of bodies moving to the world-class metalcore on display. With crowd surfers going over the barrier at a rate of several each track, the band mentioned that they’ve broken the venue’s crowd surfing record within a set just three songs in (with a big thank you to the security teams keeping everyone safe too).
It’s clear that in Bury Tomorrow’s performance tonight we’re witnessing something special. Black Flame is the best album to come out of the UK metal scene in years, and the live renditions tonight fit the high bar it sets, with vocalist Daniel Winter-Bates hitting the nail on the head when he states with certainty, “This is going to be a fucking night to remember.”
Each band on their journey to going stratospheric will play a run of shows where it’s abundantly clear the venues they're selling out are too small for their profile. Not since Killswitch Engage played a 2000-cap venue back in 2007 (check the warmup show for Download Festival in Bristol (then Carling, now O2) Academy) have I witnessed a metalcore performance displaying such engagement from the entirety of a venue of this size. Tonight was the night Bury Tomorrow made themselves comfortable on the throne as the UK’s current best metal band.
Also from Black Flame, "The Age" is an epic performance video from Bury Tomorrow.
Bury Tomorrow’s Setlist:
01. No Less Violent
03. Royal Blood
04. An Honourable Reign
05. More Than Mortal
06. Knife Of Gold
07. The Age
09. Last Light
11. Man On Fire Encore:
12. My Revenge
13. Black Flame