It has to be said that DevilDriver is a band famed for their live performances so I went in with high expectations – and needless to say, I wasn’t disappointed.
Bleed From Within got the night off to a blistering and strong start, injecting a tremendous amount of energy into the room right from the get go. The fivepiece worked exceedingly hard at getting the crowd onside and in particular frontman Scott made sure to get the crowd involved as much as possible, whether by instructing us to punch the air, cheer, bang our heads or even start a mosh pit! When a band works so hard, it shows in their performance and it was excellent from start to finish – they were just so tight and it was quite possibly one of the best performances I’ve ever seen them give, if not THE best. They were an unstoppable force to be reckoned with (accompanied with some very impressive headbanging and windmilling!) and the set ended with Scott doing a bit of crowdsurfing – what a start to the night!
Sylosis were up next and whilst they didn’t quite have the energy or movement of Bleed From Within to start off with, they got a lot stronger as the set progressed and when Josh demanded a circle pit, by god did he get one – resulting in an insane amount of motion about the floor which wound up as a sea of moving bodies by the time the set came to a close! It was a good, solid set from the band and after they finished, the crowd was nicely warmed up for the main attraction.
The chants for DevilDriver rang out through the venue long before the band were due to arrive onstage, and when they did, it felt like the whole room erupted with noise and people were already crowdsurfing over the barrier after the first song alone!
The whole room was just alive throughout the set (although you’d expect nothing less from a band renowned for their insane pits) and DevilDriver really fed off the crowd’s enthusiasm, making for a great show. There was so much movement and energy on the stage that it was almost impossible to know where to look and Dez was just a masterful frontman, effortlessly commanding the crowd – with a particular highlight being when he thanked crowd members who’d already seen the band before and also greeted first-time DevilDriver gig-goers by welcoming them to the family.
The set ended with some of the most intense pits of the entire set and it was an all-round absolutely phenomenal night – somehow I doubt anyone in the whole room will be forgetting it in a hurry.