Following the release of their fourth record and a stellar Download performance, melodic metalcore heavyweights The Amity Affliction are finally gaining momentum on this side of the world, and their sold-out headline run in the UK is proof enough. The line for the gig snakes through the underpass and round the corner (Gorilla is tucked under the train tracks by Oxford Road station) – and the gig-goers are buzzing with excitement.
Openers Napoleon are an intriguing bunch – their brand of ‘melodiposipassiongroove’ (their words, not mine) get the crowd going, and whilst vocalist Alex Feggi’s interactions with the crowd come off as a little awkward and shy, he has no problem roaring through tracks like ‘Liars and Sellers’.
The second band on, Heart in Hand are veterans in comparison. Vocalist Charlie Holmes has the crowd hanging on his every yelled word – the five-piece hammer their way through a tight set, and well-crafted songs like ‘A Beautiful White’ leave the crowd wondering why the band aren’t further up the bill.
Following such a great supporting set was never going to be easy, but Ohio metallers The Plot In You give it their best shot. Sharing jokey tales of walking in on other people peeing, vocalist Landon Tewers proves a charismatic frontman. His screams of ‘Come ON!’ are met with an enthusiastic response, and the four-piece’s set whizzes by in a haze of fury, passion and a live performance of ‘Rat Poison’ that is nothing short of epic.
The Amity Affliction are one of those bands that send chills up your spine by just walking on stage – the setlist by the Australian quintet seems far too short as they fire through some absolute tunes at breakneck speed. From the first notes of ‘Pittsburgh’, the entire room screams each word back at vocalists Joel Birch and Ahren Stringer – they’re both taken back by the passion of the crowd’s response. There are pits, crowd-surfing, stage-diving – you name it. Through crowd favourites like ‘Green’s Avenue’ and ‘Youngbloods’, through to newer material off their latest release, like ‘Never Alone’ and ‘The Weigh Down’, the crowd is with the band, 100%. As the last bars of ‘Don’t Lean on Me’ fade out, and the audience slowly disperses, it feels like something important has come to an end.
– Iqra Choudhry
Venue: Gorilla, Manchester
Support Band: Napoleon, Heart In Hand, The Plot In You