Sunday, 24 December 2017

Five Finger Death Punch/ In Flames/ Of Mice and Men Wembley Arena 21/12/17 Live review

FFDP - Photo credit: Nathan Kerridge-Porter

It’s a cold winter’s night, the capital awash with thousands of commuters and those brave enough to head out and capture the last remaining presents from exhaustive Christmas lists. 

However, venture further north and into Wembley and you’ll find another party and a wholly different atmosphere. 

The Arena is awash with black t-shirts but in some small pockets a couple of Father Christmas hats are visible. Tonight’s festivities are not in-line with the Christmas spirit yet Five Finger Death Punch and co has brought the party. 

Up first are Orange County’s own `Of Mice & Men’. Unfortunately, this reviewer wasn’t able to arrive on time to view the Metalcore outfit strut their stuff on the emerging crowd, yet from the patter of the surrounding individuals the band were “Pretty decent”. We shall be sure to give them a proper review next time!

In Flames: Photo Credit: Nathan Kerridge-Porter

Onwards and upwards, up next are legends of Swedish metal `In Flames` (7) . Now, as of recent years, In Flames have been extremely unapologetic about stretching their sound. Yet on tonight’s showing, they’ve definitely upped their game since last years support to Avenged Sevenfold at The O2. 

In Flames have also in the past few years suffered a number of line up changes, and of course, this takes time to gel. The band have firmly come together and appear tighter and more coherent, they storm the stage with all the hits from their last album through to a storming rendition of “Take This Life”. 

Whether this was a support slot or billed as a co-headliner, the band’s stage set up revealed far more about their intent and that wasn’t playing second fiddle to tonight’s final band. The light show they provided almost put Oxford Street’s Christmas lights to shame, although, their first song appeared to behind a large curtain and not in full glory. Technical difficulties or stage planning, either way the band stormed on through. 

FFDP: Photo Credit: Nathan Kerridge-Porter

Ah up next and our last band for the evening, the Las Vegas 5 member trope known affectionately as ‘Five Finger Death Punch’ (10). 

The band flanked by an old school set up with a wall of Marshall Amps, risers and a giant skull and cross bones although later discovering these were in fact baseball bats. 

Armed with a huge back catalog and songs with unique identifiable catchy choruses and solos, the band tread the waters between Metal angst and the Maiden style sing along moments coupled with fun gimmicks and immense flame jets shooting out over the band. 

Certainly, one aspect that was extremely welcoming was Ivan’s interaction with the audience, in particular with some of the disabled guests. He showcases the band’s warm and generous nature by giving out t-shirts and a half broken bat. 

Both In Flames and Five Finger are perfect Marmite bands, people love them or hate them equally. Yet based on tonight’s showing both bands showcase precisely what’s great about our music, loud, bombastic, a show full of fire and blinding lights. The past, present and future all represented by tonight’s 3 bands. 

Five Finger Death Punch online:

In Flames online:

Of Mice and Men online: