Review: Coal Chamber – Koko, London – 31st May 2015.

Wrapping up their UK tour at a sold out Koko in London, American nu metallers Coal Chamber are back and with their new album Rivals, their first in 13 years, having been recently released , they have been tearing the UK a new one, and with some great supports in tow too. Having not toured the UK properly for about 15 years, it was safe to say the anticipation and excitement for this show was unreal.

On their first tour of the UK ever, Dope (★★★★) were here to kick off the nights entertainment; they had half an hour to make their mark, and whether you knew them coming into this gig or not, you certainly remembered them when you left. Edsel Dope commanded the crowd from the get go and Die Motherfucker Die, Violence, and their Murderdoll esque cover of Billy Idol’s Rebel Yell had pits forming and chaos flowing.

Stepping in for American Head Charge who had to pull out of the tour on “personal reasons”, local lads The Defiled (★★★★) had some big shoes to fill. Wasting no time by powering through Sleeper, and As I Drown, they seemed to fit the bill perfectly and it’s clear to see they’ve got some fans in the room. Running In Circles from their forthcoming EP is a catchy number, whilst Unspoken brought their short yet powerful set to a close.

SOil (★★★) seem a tad flat and have what sound like a few technical issues to start off with, but that doesn’t seem to hinder their following song Breaking Me Down which sounds huge and riotous. As their set progresses with songs old and new, unsurprisingly the crowd erupts into mayhem when the band performs Halo. Finishing with a rendition of Ram Jam’s Black Betty, SOil may have just won the cover of the night award and remind us why they’re here.

Having starved the UK of their presence for as long as they have, it’s no surprise that Coal Chamber (★★★★) get a roaring reception from the already sweaty crowd. Kicking off back to back with Loco and Big Truck, Dez Fafara has fans eating out of his palm from the moment they come onstage to the very moment they leave. Material from the new album sounds huge live with I.O.U. Nothing and title track Rivals standing out for all the right reasons. Grinning from ear to ear, it’s clear that these guys love being back and we love having them back, and as they tear through Sway, it’s hard to believe that the Koko remained in one piece.

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