Attack! Attack!, Cancer Bats, Funeral For A Friend

Edmund Townend 12/12/2008

Supporting the Welsh modern rock giants that are Funeral for a Friend tonight, as well having just finished touring with up and coming The Blackout in Europe and having Lostprophets' members produce and appear in their debut album, Attack! Attack! are well on their way to the top of the Welsh music hierarchy - and that's even before you've heard them!

Dramatic intro music playfully announced the band's homecoming after 'spending so much time in England that [they]'ve forgotten what sheep look like', they came on in darkness, against screens displaying their distinctive moniker which reinforced their punchy attitude. Their impressive entrance was dampened somewhat by a surprisingly lacklustre greeting from their hometown. However Attack! Attack! are a lot more of an easy listen than that of their predecessors tonight - Cancer Bats and FFAF - and without the screams and heavy guitars to match, they were only cheered on by those whose music taste spread wider than mutated post-hardcore. Despite being born of the darker, more emo (the pre-2000 genre) Dopamine, they unleash a far more upbeat sound nowadays.

With more energy than the whole crowd put together, they launched straight into Home Again, so explosive it inspired the crowd to get involved. With the realisation that they were a local band too, a lot more ears were tuned in. Rolling straight into the anthemia Honesty with the vague yet brilliant lyrics Honesty didn't get me anywhere/I know cos I read it in your diary/take a pinch of salt with every word that I say. The lyrics spark an interesting chord with the listener, it sounds like something you should've heard before, but haven't. It's the perfect filler for that gap in the scene that seems to have become gaping.

The raw sound of just vocals, guitar, bass and drums is always a challenge to really make original. With trying to sound different in as many ways as possible, bands are losing their edge. Attack! Attack! are honest in their sound, just stripping away all the fakery of effects and forced originality to keep the raw sound and inject listenability into it. The final kicker in their awesome music is the sheer energy they put into every performance - especially with Say It to Me. Guitarist and backing vocalist Ryan powers in with an epic repeat of the song's title which makes the metaphorical hair on the back of the crowd's neck stand up.

The energy doesn't let up throughout the entire set, and even without the crowd that their performance deserves, there's still a lot of pumping fists and head banging. The energised crowd sing along with Lights Out under their command to show that they've gained a few more fans with their enthusiastic mentality. Ambitious jumps and agonisingly real rock faces truly show the band's passion for their music. There's no image with Attack! Attack! Besides the name on banners behind them, and their uniform black, it's all about the music on stage. Finishing with Too Bad Son reinforces their sincere appeal to show that this is all they are - they released this song for free on the internet in a very wise move that's beginning to spread to allow more people to become involved in their music.

Photo by Stellar Spontaneous Photography