Elkie Maddison – Platform
A sold out gig is something to boast about, especially when it is so packed that even getting into the room is a journey in itself. So you’d think with this in mind, the crowd would go wild for Kentucky rockers, Black Stone Cherry. As it goes, they didn’t.
Expecting the 2000-strong main room at Rock City to be alive on Monday night was possibly an overestimation, as the most anybody did more than the occasional head nod was to stumble when the larger men who’d had one too many pints (and chips) tried to shimmy through the crowd.
The tone of the night was set by support band, Rival Sons. Arriving half-way through the set and not knowing who they were, I could only presume the cast of Wayne’s World had got lost and ended up on stage playing samey-not really got any hits just a lot of loud guitars– rock in a prelude to the highly anticipated show.
Credit where credit’s due though; the venue was packed out even at this point. Although this could have been more down to the audience themselves. Instead of the usual wet mess of sweaty haired adolescents with their tops off usually expected at a metal gig, the crowd was that of an older nature, most of whom looking like they were contemplating life rather than at a gig. No mosh pits tonight, but a series of polite clapping after every song seemed to satisfy the bands.
The lacklustre crowd could be forgiven for copying lead singer and guitarist of Black Stone Cherry, Chris Robertson. You’d think standing in the same position for their hour-long set would grow tiresome but Robertson, who was clad somewhat bizarrely in a flat cap and waistcoat, barely moved xunique sound the band have going, and it really works for them.
Tracks such as Blind Man, Rain Wizard and White Trash Millionaire were especially impressive with Robertson’s powerful vocals and the catchy riffs strung out by the enthusiastic guitarists and were hits with the fans who sang them back word-for-word. Not just a criticism to this band, but perhaps it would have been nice to hear a little more of the band singing and a little less of the crowd’s out of tune interpretation of the songs. This also unfortunately gave the chance for the individual next to me to release her death breath on the world.
The real surprises, and possibly the best part of the night though, came when the band inexplicably struck up the chords for Oasis’ Champagne Supernova and then a short cover of Nirvana’s Rape Me, both of which were instant crowd pleasers and were sung back more enthusiastically than any of their own songs.
The real show stealer however was the drummer, John Young. Apart from having epic curly hair, he also played an incredible set throughout, including a drum solo, without missing a beat even after losing more drum sticks than was possible to count.
Latest single Blame it on the Boom Boom and their ‘acoustic metal’ set were also enjoyed by the dedicated crowd, who watched it all through their six mega pixel cameras, oblivious to the fact that they could see it in high definition if they just looked up.
An enjoyable performance by the band, but the audience really let the side down.