Review by Woody
The Robin is without doubt my favourite venue, whenever a tour or live dates are announced it’s the one venue I’m always hoping for and it’s always met by a mini fist pump by me when bands I like announce they are playing there. So, when Daylight Robbery announced they were going to play a headline show there I was very happy and excited and to boot they made it a value for money show by assembling a four-band bill.
The Nic’s are a relatively new band born out of the ashes of Guts of Glory and they play no nonsense big riff hard rock with deep classic rock style vocals. They were very rough around the edges tonight a little unrehearsed perhaps, they trio have a new drummer in place and their set did feel a little slap dash almost as if they were winging it a bit. They didn’t take themselves too seriously and were obviously performing for the fun of it and that shined through. I can’t say I was blown away by them but I did enjoy their set regardless they just need to tighten things up a bit and keep song writing. They definitely have the potential to be a formidable live act with the right songs.
Some many know Brum ‘celebrity’ Ian Danter for his other work on TV and radio more so than his own music. I have to admit I’m not overly knowledgeable of his work even though he has a soft rock sound that would normally be on my musical radar. I’ve only seen Danter once before supporting SHY at the Steve Harris tribute show a few years back but tonight the line-up seems different and even sees Danter on Drums. I have to admit the band seem rushed and on edge as if they are encountering one problem after another and with Danter on drums I did wonder if they were having line-up issues. To be fair the band as a whole seem pretty together when performing even though there were some nerves apparent.
If you’re into the softer end of rock and like a bit of Toto and west coast AOR then his music should appeal to you. That said there is a strong British flavour to his song writing and some of the songs have very strong and obvious Beatles touches to them. It’s those overtly Beatles inspired tunes where the band lose me a little I much prefer the more melodic rock stuff they performed. It pains me to say cause the guy has an obvious love for a genre I adore but his own music feels very lightweight and unsubstantial so with it not resonating with me it fails to make much of a lasting impression. It was a nice enough set and very pleasant to my soft rock loving ears, but the songs just aren’t strong enough to make me a dribbling fanboy!
Within seconds of Vicious Nature hitting the stage I very quickly needed a change of underwear – things suddenly got very loud and very heavy! Fans of old school Metallica would definitely enjoy Vicious Nature’s thrash metal style. Although the band felt a little restricted on stage with very little room to move due to the amount of equipment on stage they still managed to put on a strong visual performance and came across as very experienced live performers. I think all the people who had specifically come to see them would have been very happy with their performance.
For me personally though they were way too heavy and while I could appreciate the quality of musicianship on display and definitely pick up on why these guys would be popular with Thrash metal fans I just couldn’t get into them. Vocalist Andy Pyke has a very strong and powerful voice and even though comparisons to Metallica and Megadeth are obvious I actually think Pyke has a stronger and more diverse vocal than the respective singers of those bands and I think this something that helps make them stand out in the local music scene. If thunderous heavy metal is your thing these guys are worth checking out!
I’ve been a fan of Daylight Robbery for quite some time now and I’ve always enjoyed seeing them live as they are always consistently strong live performers. This is their first headline show at the Robin and the big advantage to this is they have full use of the entire stage – rather than having to squeeze on! So, they take full advantage of this by having the keyboards on a larger riser with the drums, giving their Keyboardist David Billingham are more prominent visual presence.
It wasn’t a flawless performance but it was always enjoyable and those minor flaws never impacted on a powerful set of hard hitting melodic rock. They kept the set flowing and didn’t mess about with banter in between songs they just got on with it and made the most of their stage time.
Daylight Robbery have a diverse set of songs and they display that tonight with songs with progressive leanings like ‘Paradise Lost’ which has one of the most addictive guitar riffs ever and their more commercial melodic rock edge of songs like ‘Samarah Never Sleeps’. I was really happy about the inclusion ‘I’ll Be Seeing You’ which is a real AOR song and shows another softer, smoother side to the bands song writing. I didn’t think this song would ever make their live set as I thought it may drop the atmosphere or soften their harder edge but the song came out perfectly and was one of my highlights of their set.
Daylight Robbery did a great job of keeping you invested and entertained and really ramped it up for their final trio of songs. Full of energy, undeniable hooks and those sing along choruses you just can’t help but join in with! Starting with ‘Shame on You’ with that killer metal laced riff delivered flawlessly by guitarist Mark Carleton, the rock impact of the dramatic ‘Cross Your Heart’ and they close out with the melodic joy of their commercial rock anthem ‘While You Were Sleeping’. A fantastic set finished off in explosive style.
As usual vocalist Tony Nicholl commands the stage with his powerful vocal backed strongly by his heavy hitting rhythm section of Colin Murdoch and drummer Rob Chivers. David Billingham bucks the trend of ‘boring’ keyboardists by been one of the liveliest keyboard players I’ve seen and not only justifies his prominent visual stage placement but also proves keyboarders can put on entertaining performances and still deliver those lush licks and atmospherics. Guitarist Carleton always has a very serious stage demeanour and although he may not bounce around like a loon watching his fingers dance on some of those infectious guitar riffs is way more entertaining!
I had a great night and I really hope Daylight Robbery make headline shows at the Robin a regular thing especially with multi band line-ups which not only make it value for money but it also gives other bands the opportunity to play the venue! The night may have got a bit blurry towards the end (have I mentioned I looooooveeee The Robin) and I may have *cough* over indulged on liquid refreshment but that joyous feeling and smile was definitely music induced (unless that dream where Bryce Dallas Howard threw me in her sex dungeon wasn’t a dream)! Oh and by the way if you saw me dribbling in a bush it wasn’t me it was my evil twin and whatever you do don’t ever speak to him he’s a proper arsehole!
live reviews >