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The annual Kerrang tour kicks up a whole lot of fuss every year, and there was a lot of controversy surrounding the lad-rockers Don Broco headlining this year. Not because of the fact they’re a bit too poppy for a lot of “true Kerrang! readers”, but because arguably they aren’t really big enough to fill that slot. Previous years have seen the likes of Limp Bizkit and Good Charlotte on the same playing field, so for many, Broco was a quite underwhelming choice. Plus, let us not mention that the awaited return of Young Guns was cut to only three songs long.

Opening were US metalcore outfit Beartooth who warmed up the crowd well, although they seemed somewhat mismatched with this tour. The stage seemed to put too much of a gap between themselves the crowd, being a basement band at heart. Their songs, as strong as they sounded, truly did not suit the grand size of the Guildhall, which sucked a lot of the life out of their music.

Bury Tomorrow were next up on the bill and brought what Beartooth could not. This being their hometown show, it was easy to see that many, many fans had paid the ticket price for them and them only. The band took control of the stage and made it their own in a flurry of riffs, breakdowns and ferocious vocals.

One of the few highlights of the night was the short but sweet set by Young Guns who despite their shortest straw situation played with much heart and grace. Opening with their recent fan favourite ‘I Want Out’, it seemed almost sabotaging to see them end after such a short set. Unfortunately they were followed by a full length set by pop rockers We Are The In Crowd whose watered-down pop punk left much to be desired after being totally upstaged by the previous act.

The night came to a close with Don Broco, which definitely brought the night’s standards back up. The band opening with ‘Money Power Fame’ off their currently unreleased record set ablaze any previous lacklustre performances in a roar of riffs, immaculate singing and truly off-the-wall persona. Vocalist Rob Damiani took control of the Guildhall with the flick of a wrist and his truly sterling vocals ran rings around most of the night’s other acts. Finishing with ‘You Wanna Know’, it seems Kerrang! picked the right headliner, ushering a new era for the Broco.

Rory Kelly

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