What a happy coincidence. The hottest day of the year (so far) falls on one of London’s hottest shows – a co-headlining extravaganza between Texan metallers Drowning Pool and "huge rock stars" Fozzy. Typical, then, that the venue gets downgraded from Camden’s spacey Electric Ballroom to Highbury & Islington’s Garage. A move that means the temperature levels are going to be high later.
The task of warming up (metaphorically) the crowd falls to Revoker (6), who struggle to leave an impression on the London audience. Sure, the tunes are good. But admittedly, their hard-hitting metal gets a bit lost in a live environment.
Thankfully, Fozzy (7) rectify this almost instantly. Enter: Chris Jericho. Okay, so he’s probably got a few of his moves from his wrestling career. But his awesome-frontman game is a welcomed distraction from the facial expressions of his other band members, who’ve clearly been revising their Big Book of Generic Metal Faces... Or something. The songs sound great, though, and the crowd participation is actually so impressive during ‘God Pounds His Nails’ that Jericho pulls out his iPhone to film it. But despite the high energy thrill of the electric ‘Enemy’, Fozzy’s set does feel like it all blends into itself, and it’s often hard to keep entirely concentrated on the band’s slightly over-excessive, try-hard metal. It’s damn good fun all the same, though.
Drowning Pool (9) don’t manage to equal Fozzy on the energy levels, as some of the crowd actually leave before the Texan titans even start. Fortunately, though, this doesn’t hinder the power behind the songs from their new album, Resilience. It also helps that newbie Jasen Moreno is a total pro, and a complete natural at the forefront of one of metal’s most established bands. And while it’s the old favourites that everyone wants to hear, latest single ‘One Finger And A Fist’ sounds perfectly fitting, and the groove of ‘Saturday Night’ raises temperature levels even higher. Naturally, closer ‘Bodies’ is the triumph of the entire night, and it’s worth staying for the reaction to that song alone. “I’ll remember this forever!” Jasen grins at the end of the set. So will we, Jasen. So will we.