Review & Photo’s by Joe Dick (@joephotolive)
Enter Shikari have spent years crafting their unique sound and bending genre’s limits as if it’s just another day at the office! With their 7th album (A Kiss for the Whole World) just days away from release we headed down to London’s newest venue HERE at Outernet for the final date of their 3 month residency!
Hidden four floors below London’s bustling center, HERE at Outernet was already packed by the time we got there. Hundreds of Shikari fans are buzzing to see their favorite band and possibly catch a preview of the new album if they are lucky!
Tonight’s opener was Tokky Horror, a drum and bass punk crossover; stomping around on and off the stage, vocalists Mollie and Ava took no time to get in the front rows faces and subject them to the cutting mix of thrashy guitars and 303 drum samples. An extremely aggressive version of My Humps by The Black Eyed Peas was definitely a highlight of the set as it saw Ava and Mollie vault the barrier and perform in the middle of the huge pit that had opened up!
Northern hardcore band Higher Power were this evening’s second support and boy oh boy did they give us a show! Smashing out the gates with ‘Rewire (101)’ and ‘Shedding Skin’ the mosh pits instantly opened up all around the venue to get groovy to the bands upbeat and speedy punk tracks. Frontman Jimmy Wizard dragged the mic stand back and forth like a pitbull who doesn’t want to give back his new toy, serenading the audience with his harsh but somewhat dreamy vocals. Higher Power truly put on a masterclass of a show in the short time they had to do so!
After a quick stage change it was time for Enter Shikari, a dramatic build up as the lights positioned around the stage gradually shot to life illuminating everyone’s favorite mascot Sparky the synth as the crowd proceeded to scream the chant “and still we will be here, standing like statues” which has become somewhat of a anthem for Shikari fans. The guys strode on stage with smiles plastered over each one of their faces before dropping into newer single ‘(pls) set me on fire’ from their aforementioned new album; Rou Reynolds jiving around the stage like a baby deer learning how to walk. After the opening track finished and a few hello’s were had, Rou began reciting the song ‘System..’ acapella, we noticed one security guard whisper to his mate “wtf is this?”, unbeknownst to them what was about to happen when ‘…Meltdown’ boomed out of the speakers not seconds later!
As good as the new songs are, everyone loves the classics, so when they gave us ‘Juggernauts’ and ‘Anything Can Happen in the Next Half Hour…’ back to back we were over the moon and evidently so were the rest of the crowd as screams of excitement echoed around the room. Half way through the set Rou announced they were about to play their most ridiculous track they had ever written and then sonically smacked us round the face with ‘Slipshod’ which can most definitely claim that title.
It wouldn’t be a Enter Shikari set these days without something they like to call “The Quickfire Round” which normally consists of some of the bands most rambunctious and unruly tracks squeezed into a very short amount of time; tonight we got ‘Havoc B’,’Bull’,’The Last Garrison’ and a hyper drum and bass remix of ‘Sorry, You’re Not a Winner’!
The end of the set consisted of newest single ‘Bloodshot’ which surprisingly had one of the loudest sing a longs even though it had only been out a mere few weeks, and finally closing the set with ‘Live Outside’ which put a smile on our face as it’s a track that really shows off the phenomenal song writing that this band can produce.
I would love to say that was the end but as it is customary these days, we were given a little bit more to chew on as the boys jumped back on stage a few minutes later for a very welcomed encore. It also saw Rou stand atop the sound desk to perform his singing duties as they finished off the night with the self titled song ‘Enter Shikari’ and last but not least ‘The Dreamer’s Hotel’.
An insane night was had by all, it’s performances like this that really show you why you love a band, a setlist spanning over 10 years of songs new and old but nothing really feeling out of place or outdated. If tonight’s preview of new tracks is anything to go off, ‘A Kiss for the Whole World’ is set to be a masterpiece when it’s released on 21st April.