Photo courtesey of Hannah’mayys Photography
Sweat drips from the ceiling in the cavern of Sticky Mike’s as Frank Carter and co. take to the stage for a gig put on by Black Rabbit Promotions. The anticipation of the return of 21st century punk’s favourite son is palpable, with the only free space remaining for a mosh once the music begins.
Upon the striking of the first note the crowd erupts, pogoing to the jackhammer beats of guitar, bass and drum. Carter beats his microphone against his forehead whilst bellowing at his baying audience, drawing the blood that the visceral noise demands. Catharsis in front of two hundred sweaty people. The epileptic wide-eyed rage of British punk revived, Frank Carter is back to what he does best.
Fangs is greeted with bedlam, the biggest mosh of the night thus far, as amps topple and ankles give way under the riotous riffs, with vocals and guitar sound both losing out to the rush of the crowd. Sweat lines the walls as the crowd is urged for continued intensity, despite the fact they only know three of the songs being played.
The intensity is indeed maintained as Carter dives into the crowd for his slow section, with the tales of love and pain throughout Loss, in which the only glimpse you’re likely to get of him in action is through the screen of an iPhone, such is the mob nature present tonight.
The mosh mentality is maintained throughout, but reaches new heights when the few songs that are familiar to those in attendance are introduced. Primary Explosive sees lights falling loose from the ceiling under the pressure of bouncing skulls, whilst Paradise sees guests from supporting acts Milk Teeth and Loom freeing up The Rattlesnakes to wander freely on the shoulders of their audience.
Frank takes advantage of his privilege, ten years into his career, to take his audience to new levels of adoration, demanding that Fangs is reintroduced at the end of the show, as the tired band and crowd unite together in a sweaty cacophony of rage and energy, before I Hate You rounds off proceedings with the violent chant of “I hate you and I wish you would die”, in a glorious episode of angsty rebellion.
The modern king of punk is back; long may he tear up tiny venues across the country. A sweaty mass of tattoos and hair leaves satisfied, and while he may be thankful that people still like the music he produces, it is them who should be thankful to him, the political and personal rage that has long been missing, and it is Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes who have the guts to provide it.
By Lennon Craig