CONCRETE KINGDOMS / EMPYRE / TOMORROW IS LOST / BRORA WOLF - Concrete Kingdoms Ep Launch - Ivory Blacks, Glasgow - 24.08.18

CRAIG COOPER

PHOTO CREDITS: GAVIN ROSS PHOTOGRAPHY

 

Ivory Blacks in Oswald St, Glasgow is the venue tonight for the eagerly awaited launch of Concrete Kingdoms self titled EP. This is a smaller type venue compared to some of the other bigger sized venue options in Glasgow, however, it suits down to the ground for tonights intimate launch party.

 

BRORAWOLF are based in North Lanarkshire and are a four strong rock band tonight, however, they are usually a five piece but usual vocalist Kate Williams has been suffering a few vocal issues of late and the band have drafted William Stott onto vocal duties in the interim. Opening the show tonight with ‘Get on my level’ which is an extremely good old fashioned rock song and gets the crowds juices flowing. ‘Impala Angels’ and ‘The Flags All Stand Still’ continue in the same vein and the crowd are completely loving this bands’ style.

 

The opening bass line to ‘Saints and Sinners’ runs a shiver down the spine and the track doesn’t fail to deliver. ‘Running with the demons’ which is next, immediately brings an Alex Harvey type sound to my mind. The next track ‘Status Quo Ante Bellum’ with a riff that Tony Iommi would die for, is the standout track of the night for me and the crowd also, judging by their reaction. The short set ends with the self named song ‘Brora Wolf’ and rapturous applause from the appreciating crowd.

 

Brora Wolf are:

William Stott – Guitar/Vocals

Paul Black – Guitar

Chris McMillan Sr – Bass

Chris McMillan Jr – Drums

 

For more info : https://www.facebook.com/BroraWolfMusic


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TOMORROW IS LOST are next up on the 4 band bill tonight. They are a five piece based in Newcastle upon Tyne and have travelled up tonight especially to play at tonights launch. The minute they hit the stage with ‘We are the lost’  and vocalist Cass King opens her mouth you get exactly what this band are about right away. The twin guitars of Joe McDermott and Ryan O’Hara complement each other perfectly and are the ideal foil for Kings vocals. Not to be outdone the backline of Adam Clements on bass and Marc Rush on drums whilst not as upfront as King & McDermott, most certainly take their equal placings in this band.

 

‘Rapture’, ‘Black & Blue’ and ‘Therapy’ absolutely batter the crowd with the phenomenal musical talent on show. King prowls the stage almost catlike looking straight down the camera lenses of the photographers down the front. She’s on the barrier, off the barrier, front stage, side stage, plying her trade like a seasoned performer, despite her tender years.

 

‘Man Within his mind’ is then followed by an unusual choice of track, a cover of Sia’s ‘Elastic Heart’ but what a cover it turns out to be. ‘Insane’ is next which was their debut single and released in October 2017. ‘Shadowman’ and tonights set closer ‘No one knows’ fly by in an instant.The crowd have absolutely loved the energy and panache shown by the band tonight and the applause shown to them must affirm to the band how well received they have been tonight. After a busy summer of festivals, Tomorrow is Lost say that the end of 2018 will their busiest period to date. They play Stormbreakers at Dreadnought on Saturday 8th September in an attempt to gain a coveted slot at Winterstorm in November. I’ll be there and they have my vote already.

 

Tomorrow is lost are:

Cass King – Vocals

Joe MacDermott- Guitars

Ryan O’Hara – Guitars

Adam Clements- Bass

Marc Rush - Drums

 

For further info : https://www.facebook.com/tomorrowislost/

 

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EMPYRE are one of those bands I had always known about, but unusually, I hadn’t probably heard much or in fact, anything by. What a mistake that has been. The four piece having travelled up to Glasgow from Northampton tonight open their set with ‘Drive’ and vocalist Henrik Steenholdts almost haunting vocals from the off added to the soulful tone of the song showing they mean business. Steenholdts’s vocals and guitar playing are perfectly complemented by Did Coles on guitar, Grant Hockley on bass and Jack Bowles behind them on the drumkit.

 

‘Too Little Too Late’ and ‘Just A Ride’ with its guitar crescendo towards the end of the track has the crowd transfixed by the showmanship and craft being shown on stage. The stand out track for me and which has been on repeat in my car since, is ‘Only Way Out’, it’s one of those tracks that grabs you with the chorus echoing in your head for days afterwards showing off all four band members playing, impeccably.

 

‘Something Remains’ has a clear message lying within about every day being the same as the next which appears to resonate with the crowd. Last track of the set is ‘New Republic’ which gives the whole band a chance to showcase their talents individually and as a collective. The set ends far too quickly for me and as I mentioned earlier, why I had never listened to this band I will never be able to explain. Do yourselves a favour give these 4 gentlemen a listen, you won’t be disappointed.

 

EMPYRE are:

Henrik Steenholdt -Guitar/Vocals

Did Coles – Guitar

Grant Hockley – Bass

Jack Bowles – Drums

 

For more info : https://www.facebook.com/groups/GMTTEG/

 

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Formed in Dunfermline in 2014, 5 piece CONCRETE KINGDOMS released their debut EP in August 2018 and tonight is the eagerly awaited launch party. The crowd surge forward to the barrier as guitarist Mark Faulds takes centre stage where he is joined by the rest of the band minus vocalist Mark Hawthorne as they launch into ‘Whole Lotta Hype’. Hawthorne literally explodes onto the stage with his powerful vocals and the bands tight melodies ensure the night begins on a high. ‘Speed Demon’ is the first track played from the new EP  and ‘My World’ are next up, vocalist Hawthorne continually chats to the audience getting them from the back of the room to as near the barrier as possible. His band mates Ben Fraser on guitar, Dougie Fraser on bass and Grant Duncan on drums all complement each other perfectly on this and every other track they play. There is a tightness to their music and you can instantly tell they enjoy each others company and camaraderie within this band.

 

‘Getaway’ is a new track which the crowd love and although risky playing new tracks at a launch for an EP it is warmly received. The next 2 songs ‘Same Old Same’ and ‘Die This Day’ are both from the EP and ensure that it will become an excellent seller for them as the crowd really are going wild. ‘Time to Play’ and Hawthorne urges the crowd to come out and see new young bands. He then threads his way into the crowd as the opening bars to Neil Young’s ‘Rockin’ in the Free World’ reverberate around the room and a mass sing song develops to the pleasure of everyone there witnessing it. Hawthorne makes his way back to the stage and asks the sound man if they have time for one more song and on receiving the okay, Billy Idols ‘Rebel Yell’ gets probably one of the best renditions I’ve ever heard, and all too soon the nights is over.

 

An impressive show by each and every member of the band has ensured everyone is going home happy tonight. Concrete Kingdoms have cemented their position as one of the best in the current Scottish rock music scene,  as was no more shown by the numerous members of some of the other bands in the scene turning up to watch tonight. What a night, long may Concrete Kingdoms cement themselves in Scottish rock history.

 

Concrete Kingdoms are:

Mark Hawthorne – Vocals

Ben Fraser – Guitar

Mark Faulds- Guitar

Dougie Fraser -  Bass

Grant Duncan -Drums

 

For further info : https://www.facebook.com/ConcreteKingdomsUK/

 

PHOTOS ARE NOT TO BE USED WITHOUT THE PRIOR CONSENT OF DOWN THE FRONT MEDIA. PLEASE DIRECT ALL MEDIA ENQUIRIES TO LINDSAY@DOWNTHEFRONTMEDIA.COM

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