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LIVE! – Funeral For A Friend

November 21, 2010 by  

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LIVE! – Funeral For A Friend

ARTIST: Funeral For A Friend
SUPPORT: Boys With X-Ray Eyes, Rise To Remain
VENUE, TOWN: Sub91, Leicester
DATE: 14th November 2010

FIVE WORD REVIEW: Welshmen triumph against the odds

MAIN REVIEW: After seeing the departure of their guitarist, Darran Smith, earlier this year, Funeral For A Friend arrived tonight in the modest confines of Leicester’s new Sub 91 venue. Many fans were flummoxed by the Welshmen’s choice of venue, which didn’t seem to justifiably reflect their popularity but the occasion certainly made for instant ticket sales.

Boys With X-Ray Eyes opened the gig with a professional performance of their acerbic metalcore. However, after only a few tracks it was quickly apparent that fans of the mighty FFAF cannot gauge the true complexity of their set. Riffs are juxtaposed with incessant screaming throughout the band’s time on stage and while their musicianship was commendable, I found myself constantly questioning if Architects had actually trademarked their Hollow Crown record. The likeness between the two bands was irrefutable, ensuring that the Architects t-shirt donned by vocalist Ben Morgan represented a cruel irony.

Rise To Remain are next to appear on stage, and plough through a diabolical performance that satisfies ten Kerrang magazine subscribers and bewilders hundreds of others. Vocalist Austin Dickinson may be the son of the esteemed Iron Maiden singer Bruce Dickinson, though Rise To Remain fail to display any substance in their 30 minutes of ponderously unadventurous metalcore.

‘Roses For the Dead’ signals the start of Funeral for a Friend’s set, however it is blatantly obvious that singer Matt Davies is suffering. Matt manages to struggle through half of the vocals in the track before profusely apologising to the audience, as his voice is simply torn to shreds.

Whilst Matt’s singing difficulties are disappointing, there is nothing neither him nor the band can do to remedy the situation and it’s a testament to their integrity that they even appear on stage tonight to offer a complete performance for their Leicester faithful.

‘Rookie of the Year’ and ‘Red Is The New Black’ are undeniable highlights, as the capacity crowd elects to sing the duration of Matt’s words for him. Incredibly, their enthusiasm is unbridled throughout the show and they probably rescue Matt from a throat operation in the process.

On an average day, Funeral For A Friend are one of the greatest live acts in Britain, yet they proved tonight that they can whip a crowd into euphoria without being at their mercurial best.





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