Asking Alexandria @ O2 Academy, Brixton

With While She Sleeps, Motionless in white, Betraying the Martyrs
19th January 2013
Review by Soozi Q
Photography by Luke Osborne

Asking Alexandria’s army of youthful fans are out in full force on this chilly January evening, with parents dutifully lining the back wall of Britxon’s O2 Academy, coats and bags in arms.

Sumerian Records other batch of Golden Metalcore Boys (as well as AA), Betraying The Martyrs.

A very generic genre label that does not do their eclectic mix of synthesised death- tinged metal any justice whatsoever.
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With more energy than a litter of Staffordshire Bull Terrier puppies, bounce onto, around and all over the stage during their whirlwind of a set.
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It’s over and done with before you have time to take a breath!

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They hit you like a tsunami with their infectious energy, seemless performance and thoroughly enjoyable, catchy and surprisingly heavy tunes.

Motionless in White then saunter onstage and attempt to perform most of their set in a choreographed fashion; bouncing and dipping in sync.
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Wearing more make up than any of the young girls in the audience (trust me, that’s a lot) and somehow looking pretty good with it.
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Unfortunately, however pleasing their general punked up brand of ‘metalcore’ may be to a younger audience, to a more attuned ear their music is a collection of dull, generic riffs, terribly lyrics and it is quite possible that their popularity and appeal lies in their image.

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Remaining lifespan is estimated at 5 years, maximum, before the fickle young audience they’re targeted towards gets bored and wisened to decent metal!

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Whilst waiting for While She Sleeps to do their bit, Lawrence ‘Loz’ Taylor’s sister offers an insight into her big brother’s inspiration behind his lyrics; “Loz was very close to our grandad.

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He was in the Army and fought during the war, and so if you listen to some of his songs in particular you’ll be able to tell he’s speaking of our granddad- he still is a massive inspirational figure for him”.

WSS manage to somehow completely blow both BTM and MIW out of the water on energy levels.

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Their crunching riffs, explosive vocals and lyrics and pure heavy tones send your bones shaking. They are a true metal- fuelled delight to watch. Taylor and his crew are to be watched; this may be their year.

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At the end of the gig Taylor even launches himself into the crowd, microphone still in hand, and does a bit of surfing, strategically avoiding the crowd control staff. What a showman.

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Despite being the headliners, once the fireworks display that accompanies Asking Alexandria’s entrance calm down and they get through their opening track, Welcome, the band that are the most core of metalcore bands out there at the moment are a bit of an anti- climax.

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To begin with I get the feeling that they lack something of a raw enthusiasm that even MIA managed to capture.

Their performance of Closure is pretty impressive; the sound of the crowd singing along is truly immense, one of those unforgettable memories for a hardcore AA fan.

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Their somewhat anthemic tunes have the crowd absolutely hooked!

Their understated confidence, cool and laid back stage presence and completely tight performance overall left fans begging for more, and their encores of Alerion and The final Episode certainly pleased the crowd immensely, if the ringing in my ears from the singing along was anything to judge by.

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By the end of the ultra- intense, mixed metal bag of a gig, I need to lie down and sleep for a long time, and I didn’t even get into the pit.
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AA are still going strong on their tour and shortly heading over the Pond to take the US storm; something they do oh so well. Excellent gig!

Setlist:
Welcome
Closure
A Lesson Never Learned
Breathless
Not the American Average
A Prophecy
If You Can’t Ride Two Horses at Once… You Should Get Out of the Circus
Dedication
Someone, Somewhere
Another Bottle Down
Reckless & Relentless
To the Stage
Dear Insanity
Run Free
Morte et Dabo

Encore:
Alerion
The Final Episode (Let’s Change the Channel)

 

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