April brings a mixed bag of treats, April fools day, Easter, April showers. Tonight, is no exception as Bristol’s O2 academy plays host to the ‘Start The Machine’ tour. Headliners Skindred bring their Raga-rock along with CKY’s iconic punk riffs and Danko Jones’ bluesy rock.
Danko Jones are first up to try and fire up the crowd, despite being the most veteran band on the bill tonight. The instrumentals and vocals are pitch perfect but with little interaction with the crowd other than repeatedly stating that “my name is Danko Jones” the Canadian trio are met with a similar reception. Front man Mr. Jones does point out that a handful of people are “getting in to it” and shows real appreciation for that.
The crowd flood the venue with “CKY” chants which drown out the pre-recorded chants the band appear to. Chad appears more than comfortable taking up the front man position proving that CKY work just as well, if not better as a 3 piece and that the brains, heart and soul are still very much in the band.
Playing a great mixture of old and new song that are lapped up equally form fans, Chad takes every moment to get the crowd moving. Playing down how well know CKY are Chad points out that if you haven’t heard of the band you will have heard the next song at some point with that starts to sing the opening riff of “96 Quiet Bitter Beings.” Eruptions of fans singing back ensue and finishing off with a cover of “Bite It You Scum” sees an unwanted end to CKY’s set.
Eagerness fills the room as the venue descends in to darkness and the ‘Imperial March’ blasts through the speakers as Skindred take to the stage. Benji is last to take position centre stage donning the infamous spiked sunglasses and leather jacket to match.
Crazed fans are treated to the title track from the band’s latest album ‘Big Tings.’ The Welsh Metallers are an absolute powerhouse live giving anyone trying to describe the night an abundance of highlights to choose from. Be it Slipping in covers of Metallica, Prodigy and AC/DC in to their own songs or Benji’s on stage ‘banter’ towards the now dubbed “Skindred choir” there is a clear apparent reason why these guys have the following they do.
The front man controls the crowd’s movement like a puppeteer and has everyone moving in unison. Skindred show their mellow side by playing ‘Saying it now’ acoustic puts the venue into silence a truly heartfelt moment and song is shared by all.
The encore is made up of three songs the last of which is of course ‘Warning’ shirts are already in the air in readiness for the flight of the “Newport Helicopter.” Skindred have put on a belter of a show but fans are greedy for more than just an hour and thirty minutes’ worth.