The Hotelier The Hotelier can only ever open with one song “An Introduction to the Album”. The sound has been a bit ropey throughout the supports but it's all resolved for these headliners from Massachusetts.


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The Front Bottoms The Front Bottoms have barely left the UK over the last couple of years, which shows how they've gone from playing the Temple to the Main room here tonight. The stage is dressed to feel like a cozy living room, filled win standard lamps and a sofa complete with jaded girl glued to phone. ‘Scream’ plays on an old TV and only the double mirror ball fun denotes the occasion.


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Interview with Frank Carter Gig Junkies’ Lee and Kirsty sit down to chat with Frank Carter of Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes about life on their sold out tour, the new album ‘Modern Ruin’ and 'the suit'. There's even a bit of word play thrown in for good measure.


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Black Peaks + Heck Black Peaks take the headline spot and are welcomed on stage by a whistling crowd. Opening with ‘White Eyes’ they deliver a pitch perfect set. I have to confess I've yet to listen to their debut album, I had intended to listen the shit out of it, as Black Peaks singles have been a slow burn for me. Instead I was waiting to blown away live.


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Slam Dunk Festival Midlands 2016 Slam Dunk arrived and certainly left its mark. The Midlands leg of this festival found itself a new home at the NEC complex, thanks to a refurb at its regular Wolves home. There was a vastness that felt sterile and dispersed the usual pent up energy, sweat and hormones synonymous with Slam Dunk. However, it didn't take long for the crowd to make it their own, sit wherever they could find space and bring a festival scuzz to the shiny Genting arena.


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Busted As someone who is becoming increasingly jaded about generic pop punk you may wonder what has brought me to the Genting Arena to see Busted. The infectious fun of the McBusted documentary and the return of Charlie has me intrigued to see them live.


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Crossfaith Crossfaith really are a guilty pleasure, and in all honesty after seeing them 4 times now I can’t decipher how they haven’t quite blown up yet. They are a band you need to experience live. Their one by one, riser posing entrance never gets old and I always want to know what leather jacket keyboardist Terufumi will be wearing this time. Sadly nothing compares to the Akira red jacket but tonight’s slogan emblazoned back of ‘New Age Warriors’ is promptly second favourite.


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Mayday Parade Opening with ‘One of Them Will Destroy the Other’ off their last album ‘Black Lines’, you can’t help but liken the logo to a vertical Black Flag logo. The energy levels are ramped up as lead singer Derek Sanders bounces around the stage with abundant enthusiasm.


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Cancer Bats Having last seen the Cancer Bats on a joint headline tour with ‘While She Sleeps’ it's great to see them perform to a united front. Joint headline tours often suffer from a divided crowd but tonight there is no mistaking the horns in the air and big shouts for these guys.


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Judas Priest

Local lads Judas Priest certainly know how to play to a home crowd. The stage is shrouded in the best curtain I have ever seen; showing an industrial skyline at night of the factories that inspired the genre it simply stated ‘Welcome to the Home of British Steel’ in the corner. Before the curtain drop the lighting changed to red illuminating the sky on the curtain to reflect the origins of the Black Country name.



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Anti-Flag Anti-Flag showed their political activism on their amps with imagery of a child holding a gun, and a drone. These stalwarts of the scene open with Turncoat to a rather lack luster crowd. A few songs in, with the delivery of fan favourite ‘Broken Bones’, and the crowd finally wake-up to it being a punk rock show. You can’t blame the crowd for an apathetic response; bassist Chris Barker offers up continual scissor kicks that feel contrived whilst the rest of the band just feel like they are going through the motions, all be it professionally delivered motions.


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Moose Blood Despite another tour on the cards this will be last Moose Blood show of the year and it feels right for it to be at the Kasbah as the first time I reviewed them was supporting Mallory Knox here at the end of last year. These boys have certainly worked their arses off after going from support slots to a few headline tours and a slot at Warped Tour.


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Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes The air was thick with building anticipation for Frank Carter's latest incarnation and what promise of former brutal delivery. A break to the tension was found as the crowd heartily ooohed along to Weezer's 'Buddy Holly' and as I scanned the room one couldn't help but wonder if the venues for this tour were scouted for hardcore parkour potential. The crowd still left a semi circle of open dance floor and after the cheers for The Rattlesnakes entrance, Frank declared "I haven't seen something like this since I was 14, get in". His combination of humbleness and assertiveness never fails to gain idolatry; “Thanks for coming to see a band with only 3 songs I wouldn’t have done that”.


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Man Overboard Tonight felt like I was 13 again hanging out at the Red Rose in Rugeley. The Slade Rooms has an air of the 6th form common room full of hormonal teenagers ready to release some tension by going crazy in the pit. Tonight’s show is a rescheduled tour that was originally meant to see a now defunct Hostage Calm and scandalicious Front Porch Step supporting.


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