Slaves @ Leadmill

After the success of recent release ‘Are You Satisifed’ it was impossible to ignore the buzz surrounding Slaves’ return to the Leadmill. Expectations were only heightened following an incident leaving frontman Isaac Hollman hospitalised and causing the show to be postponed by a whole month. One of the hottest live tickets of the year, the atmosphere at the Leadmill was almost palatable.

Caught mid-way between their extensive UK tour, atmospheric rockers Crows had the duty of opening the festivities. The frontman was the real star of the show, effectively mixing his sharp abrasive vocals against a backdrop of ambient sounds and reverb-soaked hooks. It was clear the band were elated to be returning to the venue following their performance this March, as the front man yelled “it’s nice to be back” before throwing himself onto the cheering crowd.

The agonising wait for the Tunbridge Wells duo finally ended, and fans vented their excitement with frantic cheers and screams as the duo entered. ‘Cheer Up London’ and ‘Are You Satisfied?’ led the onslaught of hits from their latest album and evoked a crazed response from the packed main room. Reassuringly, frontman Isaac Hollman appeared to have made a full recovery, attacking his drums at break-neck speed and powerfully venting his gritty self-styled vocals. Hollman took a moment to pause before demanding the audience to throw their underwear onto the stage; somewhat surprisingly, his wish was answered and he found himself caught in the firing line. Dubbed previously as an ‘aquatic madness’, fan favourite ‘Feed The Mantaray’ sent the audience wild, as a man in a mantaray constume pranced across the stage. Very subtle, like.

Closer ‘Hey’ was a fitting end to the show, packing one of the duo’s most brisk and intense riffs and forcing the exhausted audience into raptures one last time as Hollman surfed the crowd.

See you for round two at Tramlines!

Words: Kieran Harris


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