Yorkshire doom 'n' riffers Black Moth made their way to London Town for their biggest ever headline show in The Capital. Could they hold their own at the infamous Camden Underworld? We find out...
Vodun prove it’s worth getting to the show early doors
Deciding whether you should miss the end of Come Dine With Me and leave your house early for the opening band can be a hit and miss affair. All too often you’re stuck with a dire band and fuming because you’ll never know how Tim’s coq au vin went down with the other diners. However, tonight’s openers are very much the opposite of this horrific scenario. Decked-out in war paint, bright gowns and tribal wear, the trio look a bit like something out of Apocalypto if Mel Gibson had been hitting the acid pretty hard while filming. For a simple guitar, drums, vocal set up they make an unholy racket. If you imagine The Gossip with a penchant for psych metal and punk rather than bore off indie, and y’know, weren’t rubbish then you’re half way there. Rapid fire riffing collides with primordial tom beats, while the soulful vocals aren’t what you’d normally expect from a metal outfit they provide the perfect accompaniment to this band’s controlled chaos.
Limb are pretty heavy then
Limb can’t match the sort of giddy thrills of seeing something as unique as the enigmatic bunch that came before them. Frontman Rob Hoey’s constant arms-stretched-out-wide stage pose starts to make him feel more like a necessity than a showman. There is also an undoubted change in pace with the stoner vibes that now fill the Underworld. Where this band excel though is in being heavier than one of those massive acme weights Wile E. Coyote was forever trying to drop on Road Runner. Pat Pask swiftly delivers a smorgasbord of big riffs, and the band sound incredible tonight. It’s received by a crowd that swiftly transform into a sea of long hair whipping back and forth.
Despite humble beginnings Black Moth soon show what they’re capable of
Entering the stage with no music to hail their arrival it’s very much a low key start to the band’s set, however that doesn’t last long. The various textures that make up their unique sound has produced a back catalogue full of huge moments. The sludgey nature of Tumbleweave and Honey Lung sit seamlessly alongside the ferocious punk rock energy of songs such as White Lies and Room 13. The set highlight comes from a glorious Blackbirds Fall, a song that for all the band’s Black Sabbath comparisons, gives the legends a serious run for their money.
Harriet Bevan is a star in the making
Harriet Bevan is incredibly likeable. An infectious smile is ever present throughout the band’s set and she is regularly laughing and sharing jokes with the crowd between songs, while during the music she is subtle yet incredibly powerful. Her performance is made all the more captivating given that the often dark nature of the lyrics that pass her lips wildly juxtapose with her good natured charm. It results in a compelling sense of mystique and as she stands centre stage, rarely straying from her mic stand, her presence is mesmerising.
Black Moth may finally be getting the recognition they deserve
It’s fair to say that Black Moth are an incredibly underrated band. Yet tonight at the Underworld, the band’s largest London show to date, it becomes apparent that slowly but surely momentum is very much picking up. The diverse crowd that pretty much splits 50⁄50 between male and female and spreads decades in terms of age range just proves the potential appeal of this band. While most of the crowd, minus two guys down the front waving their skateboards around, start the evening quite reserved, it doesn’t take long before there are plenty of people moving. It’s testament to a great band working hard, and those in the know clearly adore this lot, it’s great to see the amount of those people steadily growing.