Gig Review by Zak Edwards with Photography by Bianca Barrett

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

It was a high beards per capita ratio and a heavier than normal smattering of black clobber that greeted us at one of Brum’s heavier venues ‘The Asylum’ on Saturday night, to see the rather splendid Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, at the rather earlier time of 8.15pm.

Normally the advantage of a gig being put on with a curfew kick off means that, those revellers looking for more merriment, can make their way off into town, or for older farts (like myself), we can get back for MOTD and a cup of horlicks. Annoyingly the International break had taken care of that, meaning no post gig footy for yours truly. Oh well, at least we’d have chance to get a pre catch up on the extra hour in bed we were missing. Every cloud.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Sometimes these earlier gigs can take a little while to get going. Obviously Mr Carter and his rattlesnakes hadn’t subscribed to this way of thinking. From the moment they burst onto the stage – or in the frontman’s case, the bar – it was complete and utter bedlam. But not bedlam in a negative, angsty way that leaves a bitter taste. No Siree! It was complete and utter glorious musical mayhem. The very best kind.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Contravening all manner of health and safety restrictions, FC took to curating the masses from the bar during the high octane opening gambit of ‘Snake Eyes’, ‘Trouble’ and ‘Juggernaut’ much to the obvious delight of the ‘mad scientist’ bar staff. Lovely stuff.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Not content with plying his trade from in amongst the optics, the singer made his way out into the middle of the crowd, whipping them up into a veritable frenzy in doing so as him and the band continued to plough their way through the powerful, melodic set.

“This next song is a very important song” instructed this evening’s conductor. “It’s the crowd surfing song. But there’s a rule. It’s women only. I’m deadly fucking serious”. Follow on 20 or so women being carried from one side of the venue, each and every one of them having a ball to the backdrop of ‘Modern Ruin’.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Amongst this frenetic carnage the mic went off and having been censored many a time before – most notably at Download – fans feared the worst. Was he getting booted off already for antisocial behaviour? Worry not, the mic just came unplugged during one of his more energetic rampages into the crowd. On with the fun!

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Celebrating the fact that the band had come so far in such a short amount of time with awesomely catchy ‘Wild Flowers’ and then thanking Birmingham for being “absolutely fucking amazing” before dedicating ‘Fangs’ to them, Frank was leading a veritable love fest. Of the rock persuasion. The crowd joyously reciprocated.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

The encore opened with the band’s much heavier and groovier ode to ‘Sit Down’ by James – just that little bit raunchier! Being cajoled into ‘getting low’ at Mr Carter’s behest, the audience erupted like tightly coiled springs to the chorus of ‘Devil Inside Me’. We were then treated to an emotional portrayal of ‘Paradise’ – extremely poignant after this weeks events in London.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Not content with his previous forays into the crowd and this time aided and abetted by his guitarist, Frank went one step further than surfing and treated the audience to a full on handstand, receiving 9.7 from the judges as the band belted out one glorious finale ‘I Hate You’ – lyrically splendid and extremely tuneful. The perfect fans singalong conclusion to a wonderful night’s revelry.

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Then that was that. Lights up, sweaty bodies and smiling faces a plenty and all before the witching hour. Who says the curfew gigs aren’t all they are cracked up to be?

Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes

Leave a Reply