LIVE: While She Sleeps / Cancer Bats / Hundreth / Oathbreaker @ The Forum, London

By Adam Rosario

Concluding their joint headline tour at the Forum, Cancer Bats and While She Sleeps showed why exactly they’re on the cusp of becoming something huge.

The opening act for the show, Oathbreaker were an interesting proposition. The band combined skyscraper riffs and heavy drumbeats with lead singer Caro Tanghe’s screams laying over the top to tremendous effect. The crowd is very polite, though not too sure how to take in the music that’s occurring in front of them.

HUNDREDTH take to the stage after and look set to put their own stamp on London. With a sound akin to Architects, the band rip through an 8 song set with ease. ‘Ruin’, ‘Carry On’ and ‘Weathered Town’ are all particular highlights, and HUNDREDTH have a great stage presence, with lead singer Chadwick Johnson showing off his skills as chief ringmaster, conducting the crowd and getting them involved via circle pits and chorus chanting.

The first part of the main event takes to the stage and Cancer Bats play their set as if it’s the last show that they’ll ever play. Opening with a roaring rendition of ‘Arsenic in the Year of the Snake’, the crowd explodes into an ocean of flailing limbs, chants and circle pits. Lead singer, Liam Cormier might be one of the most underrated frontmen in the world today, stalking the stage, exuding confidence, and keeping the crowd engaged throughout the hour-long set. The one-two punch of ‘Satellites’ and ‘Lucifer’s Rocking Chair’ shows that the Bats aren’t playing around with this show. Throughout the whole 16 song set, it becomes plainly obvious that Cancer Bats could easily have headlined this show on their own. ‘Bricks & Mortar’ would’ve gotten the crown for best reaction of the night, until the band unleash their monster cover of ‘Sabotage’ by The Beastie Boys, which absolutely destroys. A closing trio of ‘All Hail’, ‘Hail Destroyer’ and ‘True Zero’ closes a stunning set. Cancer Bats are a fantastic live band and with their newest album ‘Searching For Zero’ they’re on their way to the bigger shows.

The night is closed by While She Sleeps and the only word that can sum up their performance is WOW. Opening with ‘The Divide’ and ‘New World Torture’ Sleeps show that they have no time to waste in showing why they were touted as being the next big thing in British Metal. Hailing from the Steel City, Sheffield, the band have shown a steely resolve in recent times with lead singer Loz Taylor having surgery on his vocal chords and slowing down their ascent to the top. Now, sounding better than ever, Taylor orchestrates the crowd into a frenzy. The band have also gone all out on the production stakes, employing fire and CO2 throughout their set. Songs like ‘This Is The Six’ & ‘Seven Hills’ sound massive inside the Forum and the biggest singalong for the night is reserved for ‘Our Courage, Our Cancer’, which explodes throughout the venue. Closing on ‘Four Walls’, While She Sleeps have proven that their promise and potential is fully on the way to being realized. A fantastic night for music but one which proves British Metal is definitely on the up.