Live Review: Astroid Boys – Kamio, London 29/09/2017
Astroid Boys released their debut full-length album on September 29th. They held a handful of shows to celebrate – this is how the London date went down.
Grove Street Families open the night with arguably the “heaviest” sound of the bill. Having seen this band pull a decent sized crowd at Download Fest 2017, it’s a shame to see the audience so sparse here. With jumps galore and one or two die-hard fans in the audience complete with spin-kicks and mic-grabs, Grove Street give Kamio a slight taste of what is to come.
Society of Alumni fill the stage with their presence and numbers to an ever growing crowd. At this point it’s actually possible to get a photo without it looking like there’s floor space remaining. The group have an energy that may be returned by a certain crowd – but to those in-house at the moment, it’s slightly lost. The audience listens politely enough, yet there’s no real interaction from the floor. Through no fault of their own, their set doesn’t get the reception it deserves which is a shame since there’s some real talent on show.
Whilst the tour poster lists an extra three support acts (Mace, Sonny Double 1 and Manga Saint Hilare) – each of them only gets about three of four songs between them. All of them Cardiff lads, they’re introduced by Traxx of Astroid Boys to an ever more fervent audience. It’s a comfort to see them all representing the town they came from and being so damn proud of it.
With minimal time for changeover, it strikes me that the audience has actually begun to completely fill the room. Astroid Boys take to the stage and absolute chaos erupts. As someone that usually attends Rock/Metal shows, I wasn’t sure what to expect from a Grime night. For those reading this that don’t know, Astroid Boys are effectively the lovechild of Grime and some subgenre of Rock/Metal that for some reason just works. Intricate flows from Benji and Traxx underpinned by sludg-y down-tuned guitars make for moshes, crowd surfers and a ridiculously happy audience. This show marked Astroid Boys releasing their debut album “Broke”; the set saw nearly the entire thing in full. Some tracks from their first release Bacon Dream make an appearance, causing two members of the crowd being dragged up onto stage to show off their album-art tattoos; then promptly jumping back into the crowd at the drop of the next song. I’ve seen Metal shows with less energy than this – and it truly impressed me. Astroid Boys aren’t by and means a “new” band any more – but they’re just getting started.
Photography and Review by Rhys Haberfield