Alexisonfire – Newcastle City Hall

By Andy

*O2 Academy, not City Hall as above*

Hey, you know all those bands that have like a shouty singer and then a proper singer playing guitar? Yeah, well this is the band they are all aspire to be. The band that launched a thousand post-hardcore bands ALEXISONFIRE were in Newcastle to show everyone how the original blueprint was created. Whilst the hipsters piled in to swoon over Dallas Green the Canadian quintet proved that they are no, ahem, one-man band. Off the back of two highly impressive latest albums Alexis were here to show everyone just why they are idolised by fans and fellow musicians alike.

Joining Alexis was Leeds hardcore outfit CHICKENHAWK who have been gaining notoriety in the well-know hardcore circles. With the well-received new album ‘Modern Bodies’ hitting the shelves only a couple days prior they struck while the iron was hot and pummelled through an impressive 40 minute set. Lining-up as an unconventional 4-piece, as in every member played an instrument, their grungy, rock and roll hardcore vibe gauges an enthusiastic from the ear-lobed-stretched-Dallas-screaming audience. [3.5/5]

As Alexisonfire step out onto the Newcastle they are met with almost a heroes welcome. The popularity of this post-hardcore mob has been dialled up to ten after the aforementioned releases of critically acclaimed albums, ‘Crisis’ and ‘Old Crows/Young Cardinals’. Kicking off proceedings with ‘Young Cardinals’ Alexis embark on what proves to be a highly impressive set. With all the attention focused on Dallas it would be easy to forget the others members but it has to be said they are an energetic bunch. Bassist Chris Steele looks like he’s possessed throwing all kind of shapes loosely referred to as ?dance moves? whereas front man George Pettit is launching himself from stage right to left. In what turned out to be a new material-orientated set the performance is note perfect with brilliant renditions of ‘Boiled Frogs’, ‘Mailbox Arson’ and the beautifully haunting ‘Rough Hands‘.

There’s little banter between songs and even new track ‘Dog’s Blood’ receives a circle pit as the band look upon Newcastle with a sense of achievement. There is one thing about Dallas Green that makes Alexisonfire, The man has a damn good voice. It was soaring majestically throughout ‘Dog’s Blood’ and sent shivers down the spine as he sang unaccompanied. You could go as far to say it was beautiful. Alexis did satisfy the needs of their old school fans by returning after ‘This Could Be Anywhere In The World’ with an encore of ‘Accidents’ and ‘Happiness By The Kilowatt’ which once again had the tingle shooting down the spine as Dallas’ voice echoed around this great hall. [4.5/5]

It’s performances like this that makes you realise why they are one of the most coveted bands in [post] hardcore.