Bands: One OK Rock, Love Zombies & Ghost Town

Venue: Electric Ballroom, Camden, London

Date: 16 December 2014

 

  

After their first tour outside of Asia in 2013, ONE OK ROCK hit London again this Tuesday, 16/12/14, for another sold out show but this time at a much bigger venue aka the Electric Ballroom. 

But before we get to the cherry on top of the cake, let me introduce you to the supporting acts: Love Zombies and Ghost Town. 

First up that night was Love Zombies, fronted by American singer Hollis who brought Alice in Wonderland to mind, with a bit of Courtney Love and the cheekiness of Cyndi Lauper. Wearing an adorable red dress with white apron and petticoat while occasionally flaunting an umbrella along the stage, the blonde cutie surprised with a deep, interesting voice that together with the catchy guitar riffs and rhythm of the band reminded of The Cardigans, Blondie and a bit of No Doubt. This London-based band combined pop tunes à la 80s and 90s with a dash of punkish rawness and pinch of English oshare kei into something you’d love to dance to. 

Ghost Town on the other hand had a more similar sound to main act ONE OK ROCK and bands like Panic! At The Disco, Fall Out Boy and a bit of Black Veil Brides with a slightly electronic edge to it. They incorporated heavy guitar riffs, a great, multifaceted voice and atmospheric electronic beats into a modern sound and topped it off with a great performance that also included front man Kevin Ghost jumping off stage into the crowd and going along the barrier of excited fans. Somewhere near the end both Kevin Ghost and guitarist Alix Monster animated the audience to get their phones out to illuminate the venue with their flashlights along to one of their songs which created a great atmosphere that set the perfect ground for the main act of the night. 

Before I get more into ONE OK ROCK’s performance, let me tell you something about the sold out show in general. It’s normal to see fans queue in front of the venue, even in the cold rain, but on my way to the Electric Ballroom I passed the back entrance and the queue didn’t even end there yet. It went all the way from the main entrance around Camden Market to the back entrance and nearly Camden Town station. 

So when ONE OK ROCK hit the stage, their fans obviously went nuts. No surprise given that they have very catchy songs as well as wonderful ballads and no matter what kind of tune they play, it stirs emotions within you even if you don’t understand half of the lyrics (as they sing a mix of English and Japanese). Sound-wise they reminded of Japanese bands like coldrain and maybe SiM, internationally probably My Chemical Romance and Simple Plan. All that combined with a performance that overflowed with energy (including lots of jumping and kicking, spinning with guitars and head-banging) helped create a captivating show and an atmosphere similar to big concerts in stadiums. 

ONE OK ROCK’s effect on the crowd was nicely described to me by one of the security guys: “Those fans act like they are at a Backstreet Boys gig” and without doubt I can second that, especially after Taka jumped off stage and continued singing right in front of the barrier. Instantly fans pushed their way towards him and a sea of cheering hands and smiling faces (and some mobile phones here and there) surrounded the vocalist within seconds. 

It was amazing to see how their fans enjoyed the gig. They sang along to nearly every song, even to the Japanese bits. An occasional “Aishiteru” (“I love you”) was shouted here and there and when Taka asked the crowd to part in the middle and then jump together at the start of their next tune, they willingly did and continued jumping and dancing throughout the gig. 

Right before “Wherever You Are”, the crowd’s favorite of the night along with “Re:make”, Taka announced they’d be back in 2015 with another tour and thanked everyone with tears in his eyes which contributed to the song being the most magical moment of the night. 

Personally, this gig was one of my favorites this year combining an incredible atmosphere with great tunes and a performance and crowd that were both enjoyable to watch. So once announced, make sure to mark ONE OK ROCK’s 2015 tour date in your calendar - it’s worth it. 

But that’s not the only thing to look forward to. Apart from a new tour, ONE OK ROCK will release their new album “35XXXV” in February 2015. Up until then, the only comfort I could offer you is to check out their latest record “人生×僕=“ (“Jinsei × Boku =”) on iTunes, Amazon or listen to it on Spotify

For future info and tour dates of all bands, make sure to follow them on here:

Love Zombies (Facebook | Twitter | Website), Ghost Town (Facebook | Twitter | Website), ONE OK ROCK (Facebook | Twitter | Website)

Review by: Anna Zurek

 

 

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