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Issues – Camden Koko – 25/05/2016 | Live Review

Issues played their largest UK headline show at Camden’s Koko just days after their sophomore album came out. Find out what we thought of the night.

Issues

Source: Matt Higgs

This time last year you’d have been forgiven for not knowing who Issues where, but now you have no excuse. With their second album Headspace seeing release during this UK tour, it’s now or never for the band.

Politically motivated Milton Keynes mob Hacktivist provide main support, and as the heaviest band on the bill it could have been a tough crowd to win over. In fact the band get so much movement from the crowd that we’re fast assuring ourselves that this band could headline Koko themselves very soon. People suddenly wake up, and those inclined to throw some shapes and run around did so, kicking and screaming with a backdrop of destructive riffs and heavy breakdowns. The bands cover of Jay Z and Kayne Wests 'Ni**as In Paris' was always going to be a high point, with the crowd not even ashamed that they know all the lyrics. Their energetic, high octane set it draws to a close with a sea of middle fingers in the air, with everyone screaming ‘Fuck David Cameron’. A true sense of unity.

Hacktivist

Source: Matt Higgs

Issues are one of those bands where you do need to listen to more than one track, or see them live to get a true feel for them. They’re like listening to the music collection of someone who loves both Justin Timberlake and Beartooth; sweet melodies, high notes and deep, dark growls. With a complete mixture of people in the crowd everyone gets involved as the band play their largest UK headline show to date. Jumping straight in with ‘COMA’, from their latest album, the band show us that they can pull of everything they record perfectly in a live setting. There are a lot of bands who try to do what Issues do, have two vocalists and play them off against each other with singing and screaming, but few have the connection that Tyler Carter and Michael Bohn have. And even Michael’s cleans exceed many of the crowds expectations in a live setting.

Issues

Source: Matt Higgs

With a mixture of tracks from their self-titled debut release - including ‘Stingray Affliction’ and ‘Sad Ghost’ - and from their latest album including ‘The Realest’ and ‘Blue Wall’, there’s something for all fans, and a cheeky old EP track even makes an appearance. Towards the middle of the set they decide to slow things down and strip things back with an acoustic section which showcases Tyler’s vocals even more than we’ve ever heard them. With a falsetto to be reckoned with, he could give any pop artist in the charts now a run for their money.

Closing up the night, ‘Mad At Myself’ becomes a sing-a-long fest, with people screaming at the top of their lungs. As Tyler roars ‘Where are my hooligans at?!’ it’s clear we know exactly how tonight is going to end and it’s apparent straight away how massive this anthem sounds in a venue like Camden’s Koko.

Issues

Source: Matt Higgs

10 of 10
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