Shikari Army marches on

Enter Shikari
Enter Shikari

Over the past few years, Hertfordshire-based Enter Shikari have proclaimed the reputation of being one of the most insane British bands to perform live, thankfully, the four piece weren’t feeling off colour at Sheffield’s O2 Academy and lived up to that self-set standard.

The American, post-hardcore five piece LetLive started off the proceedings. Without a doubt, Jason Butler is one of the most insane frontmen to live, jumping and ‘two-stepping’ his way around the stage, with his fiery vocals and outrageous band in tow.

“The Sick, Sick 6.8 Billion” and opener “Casino Columbus” are packed with brutally churned riffs, beats and melodies, with a touch of Butler’s unhinged charm and attitude. Impressively, there were moments where the vocalist didn’t even need a mic, he simply screamed unforgivingly at the crowd. If anybody was feeling remotely tired in Sheffield, by God, they were woken up by Kerrang! Magazine’s “Greatest Rock Star in the world today”

After the audience seemingly all agreed that every gig should be opened with a support as crazy as LetLive, Your Demise followed and entered the stage to Beyonce’s “Best Thing I Never Had” and performed a set equally as hypnotic as their predecessors, but, being the older guys, had a lot more crowd involvement.

Vocalist Ed McRae had the pits in the palm of his hand, performing hits from 2010 album ‘The Kids We Used To Be’, “Miles Away” and “Like A Broken Record” established Your Demise as a heavyweight on the post-hardcore platform. The whole set was played with angst, Ed’s vocals’ shredding up any obstacle (or fan) in the way.

To finish with, Ed suggested: “Don’t care about looking cool, just have fun, just have some fun tonight” and closed with track ‘The Kids We Used To Be’ sparking an uproar of the hardcore fan base.

Eagerly anticipated headliners Enter Shikari took to the stage, and collectively grabbed, shredded and took down every part of it, before replacing it with their dance/dubstep/electronic brutal rock sound.

The four piece’s first few tracks comprised of hard-hitter ‘Destabilise’ and old school track ‘Mothership’, both guaranteed an amazing response from the crowd, if you weren’t already involved in a pit, you were starting one.

There was the ‘masked stranger’ that everybody seemed to fear, and in general, lots of half naked, sweaty punters, all uniting over the same band.

Which is what Shikari are all about,

‘Gap In The Fence’ is all about uniting, and frontman Rou is straight talking, and gets to the point immediately, congratulating the crowd for being the ‘Next generation to put things right’.

A chant of “And still we will be here, standing like statues” demanded an encore (Taken from the track Solidarity) and confirmed the crowd’s devotion.

There’s no doubt that Enter Shikari are talented musicians, soaking up every drop of energy, and transferring it into their anthemic, techno dub tracks, Juggernauts was particularly awe-inspiring, the complications and mass chaos that was revealed, and ‘Sorry You’re Not A Winner’ was an obvious hit.

It was a night of lunacy and brilliance.

I recommend you become a part of the ‘Shikari Army’.

SIAN HODKIN