Back in the welcoming arms of their home town and after a brief blackout on stage, Band of Skulls are greeted by thunderous cheers and excited waves from a crowd which seem to be made up of many familiar faces. As the band knowingly smile and gesture towards different members from within the audience, a sense of familiarity is ushered into the room, as it all becomes apparent that tonight, the band will be connecting with the venue not only on a musical level, but a personal one too.
Starting steadily with the track ‘In Love By Default’ from their newest album, the band ease themselves in for a night which soon grows into something most chaotic.As guitarist and co-lead vocalist Russell Marsden cheekily fibs “we’re going to start you off with something quiet, gentle and slow”, the trio sink straight into the twangy guitar groove of ‘Light Of The Morning’, followed by ‘Himalayan’ and numerous tracks from their first three records.
After sweeping faultlessly through the setlist, with one track (‘Honest’) even dedicated to the folks of Southampton, Band of Skulls reach ‘Hoochie Coochie’, and as the room vibrates with wild rumbling drums supported by a looping, hypnotic guitar riff, the atmosphere is pandemonium.
By this point, the audience seem to be fully immersed, constantly switching themselves between dancing as if at a 70’s disco and aggressively moshing. Although a crowd’s dance moves aren’t usually notable, it’s all the more relevant for a band like Band of Skulls, as it shows their incredible diversity and flair for rolling effortlessly between vibes.
It’s a definite surety that tonight, after a slick and mesmerisingly cool performance, fans were proud to call Band of Skulls one of Southampton’s finest, but not only that – one of the finest bands of modern rock ’n roll.
Words by Lizzie Capewell @dazednc0nfused_