Young Guns, We Are The In Crowd, Your Demise Live Review From London's Shepherds Bush Empire

Vans & rock and metal music are one of those old pairings that make sense, like Jack Daniels & Coke; In recent months Vans have been upping their involvement in the UK music scene, most notably with the return of the Vans Warped Tour to the UK after a twelve year absence, and also putting on a "Road To Warped Tour" set of shows. They've also been sponsoring the Vans Off The Wall Music Night tour, which was being headlined by Young Guns, with Your Demise, We Are The In Crowd and Marmozets also on the bill. Scribes went along to the London date at the O2 Shepherds Bush Empire to take in the fun. 

We arrived halfway through opening band Marmozets set, and they were a band we were unfamiliar with. From the evidence on offer, they seem to have a curious mix of styles, almost feeling at times like three quarters Rolo Tomassi and a quarter Paramore or something a lot more mainstream.  What also really didn't help matters was the poor sound quality on the microphone, making it very difficult to hear and understand Becca MacIntyre's vocals.  There may be some potential there but Scribes would like to give them another assessment with proper sound at some point. 
 
Unfortunately, sound problems are something that also beset the energetic set of Your Demise. Frontman Ed McRae never gives up in his quest to involve the crowd from start to finish and gets a healthy response for his efforts, but the sound is all over the place, especially on the vocals and thus a performance that was a very good performance bordering on great can only be classed as ok through no fault of the band's own. Your Demise are not the first band to have sound issues at the Shepherds Bush Empire in recent weeks (see our Dragonforce review) but let's hope they are the last for a good while. 

Your Demise - Good but sound issues

At the time of attending the show, the Scribes team were a little surprised that the main support slot on this show was taken by We Are The In Crowd rather than Your Demise. However within sixty seconds of the entrance of Tay Jardine and friends it become somewhat more obvious why. The reaction for them was huge, and we were definitely in the very small minority of those who didn't know the band. Energetic pop punk powered by the co-vocals of Tay and guitarist Jordan Eckes, they will draw unavoidable comparisons with Paramore (particularly when you hear Tay's voice on record) but that shouldn't detract from We Are The In Crowd are a very entertaining band who are excellent at their style of music. The band thanked everyone for helping them to get new single and closing track Rumour Mill onto the Radio One playlist so with mainstream coverage of the band increasing and catchy songs, it's probably only a matter of time before We Are The In Crowd blow up. Catching Paramore could be a possibility depending on future albums. 

Despite the favourable reactions for the other bands, it was clear that Young Guns were the main reason why everyone was in Shepherds Bush on this particular evening. Throughout their 70 minute set Young Guns mixed material from across their five year career to great effect. In terms of the newer songs, I Was born I Have Lived I Will Surely Die thundered around the empire with the impact of a category five hurricane while brother in arms came across as a festival singalong anthem in waiting.

For the older material (which sounds much better live than on record), DOA was the pick of the bunch, causing the biggest circle pit of the Young Guns set (particularly when the off time breakdowns at the end kick in). Winters Kiss was another crowd favourite after winning the majority vote against the other songs from the bands debut ep Mirrors.

Doing something that they apparently rarely do (and was dedicated to Gus' mum who was sat on the balcony looking very proud), Bones final track Broadfields got a very well received airing, complete with a five gun confetti cannon salute to bring the main portion of the set to an end. It came as no surprise that the loudest response of the night was granted for Bones, one of the biggest hits from a British rock band in 2012. The title track to Young Guns second album sent the floor into carnage with Gus having every single word bellowed back at him all the while by 2,000 people. With the last strains of Bones in the air, there was one last almighty burst from the cannons (steam rather than confetti this time) and when the stage cleared, the band had vanished into the night.
 
Young Guns new disappearing trick

Tonight, Young Guns stepped up to another level. The Bones album has taken Young Guns from club venues to small theatres. Another album of the calibre of Bones and they will probably join the likes of Biffy Clyro and Bullet For My Valentine on the arena circuit. Young Guns have the potential to be as big as they want to be. It would be a very good thing for rock fans everywhere if they can fulfill that potential.

Scribbled by:

Lover of most things with a foundation of rock or metal. Totally bypassed the grunge movement and was introduced to metal by Metallica and the nu-metal revolution of the early 21st century. Extremely keen photographer (music and otherwise).