LIVE: Enter Shikari / ROAM @ The Rose Theatre, Kingston

By Adam Rosario

Enter Shikari have been about for 12 years, bothering the charts with all three of their previous albums. Tonight marks the start of the 4th phase of their band. Normally, The Rose Theatre in Kingston is used to host children’s plays and serious theatre shows. Tonight it’s invaded by music fans ready to welcome back one of the best British bands of the past 10 years.

Roam are first up to try to help the crowd break a sweat. The 5 piece from Eastbourne play a pop punk sound which is hard to place. Sounding in parts like Neck Deep and in others, like ‘Take Off Your Colours’ era You Me At Six, they play a decent 30 minute set. Very little problems with the set, though the sound could be mixed better, with the drums drowning out the rest of the band in parts. Frontman, Alex Costello has a lot of energy, which is refreshing to see, trying to get the crowd involved at every turn. New single ‘Warning Sign’ acts as the highlight and closes proceedings, and Roam prove that they’ve got a bright future.

A little before 9pm, Enter Shikari take to the stage and rip straight into ‘The Appeal & The Mindsweep 1’. Frontman Rou Reynolds, known to be a master conductor of massive crowds, is on top form tonight. Dancing around the stage, inciting mayhem throughout, it’s clear that Shikari are well up for tonight. Moving into ‘The Paddington Frisk’ and ‘Destabilize’ the crowd is very clearly made up of diehard fans, screaming every single word back at the band. Three songs in there have already been 4 separate mosh pits in this tiny venue. ‘Radiate’ sees Rou strapping on a guitar and ending the song in the crowd, complete with microphone, sat crosslegged on the floor. Of course, this is the perfect place to start off ‘Ghandi, Mate Ghandi’ which features Rou’s crowdsurfing whilst singing abilities to the max. Throughout, the whole band climb anything within reaching distance, be it the crowd or their own gear.

It has to be said that the new songs aired tonight sound massive. The singles ‘The Last Garrison’ and ‘Anaesthetist’ sound incredible, and the crowd knowing all the words brings a clear boost to the band. Album tracks ‘Never Let Go Of The Microscope’ and ‘Myopia’ get a warm reception too. The biggest reaction comes at the start of ‘Arguing With Thermometers’ however. Shikari by now are masters of writing setlists for maximum impact and get it on point tonight. Going off for the encore, the crowd chants ‘And still we will be here… Standing like statues’ like they have done all night long. ‘Constellations’ opens the encore, to swaying & lighters in the air, creating a feel good, rebel-rousing atmosphere. We then have a crowd wide rendition of Happy Birthday, to celebrate Mr Reynolds’ 29th year on this planet. Closing on ‘Slipshod’ and a brain altering remixed intro filled ‘Mothership’, and the night is done.

Crowd surfers? Check. Massive tunes? Check. Best live band in the country? Massive check!

Enter Shikari. Abusing the worthless boundaries of music since 2003. 12 years into their life as a band and they’ve become one of the most consistent live bands in the world. Tonight marks the start of global domination again.