Gig review: ENTER SHIKARI – Corn Exchange, Edinburgh, 19 February 2016

Enter Shikari, a band renowned for their live performances, be it in the living room of bassist Chris Batten’s parent’s house (see video for ‘Sorry You’re Not a Winner’), the summer festival fields or in this instance, Edinburgh’s Corn Exchange. Hertfordshire’s politically charged quartet are a blend of all types of music bringing aspects of electronic, heavy metal, rock, drum and bass and post-hardcore who have been together since 1999, formed as Hybrid.

The King Blues – Corn Exchange, Edinburgh, 19 February 2016

Opening the show for Shikari was The King Blues a punk-rock band with a hint of ska. The band have recently reformed from their hiatus. The band much like Shikari are a politically motivated band and announced their reformation with a post on Facebook stating “Guess who’s back and pissed off again?”.

Their stint supporting this tour is in release of Off With Their Heads, their latest album which released February 12th, 2016. This latest release provides a look at a more aggressive side of the band with ‘Off With Their Heads’ focusing on the government backed bombing of foreign countries.

This, on the night went down amazingly. The band worked the crowd really well and delivered a set which at times was scathing and at others delightful cheery. The set in total lasted for a decent time and included hits from their past and newfound hits.

A few songs which stood out for me would be ‘The Future’s Not What It Used To Be’, ‘I Got Love’ and ‘The Streets Are Our’s. This is a band I would recommend you give a listen as they are 100% relevant at this moment in time they will also provide you with a little something different from what you may be used to.

Prior to the oncoming storm of Shikari was The Wonder Years, the pop-punk band which have been making waves in recent years. The US band on the night were let down by balancing issues with the vocals completely drowned out. I really wish I could say more about this band but without vocals the instruments however good they were seemed to fade into one.

Enter Shikari – Corn Exchange, Edinburgh, 19 February 2016

When you list the bands Enter Shikari have said they take influence from the list drags on and on, however to give you some idea, they have stated that Rage Against The Machine, Sick Of It All, The Beatles, The Dillinger Escape Plan, The Prodigy, Refused and even composer Igor Stravinsky have all contributed to the sound of Shikari.

This is a band making the step up to an arena tour in order to prove themselves, and they are doing so in high fashion. The band headlined Download’s 2015 second stage playing after Lamb of God, nonetheless. They have also been announced as headlining this year’s HevyFest. They came to the stage with their self titled song taken from the Take To The Skies album, the bands first release.

It took only until the third song for us to be treated to the band’s fan favourite ‘Sorry You’re Not a Winner’. This is what really drove the crowd up, with the mix of vocalist Rou Reynolds spending his time in the middle of the crowd whilst the crowd flew over the top of him and the fact that this song is an absolute anthem!

The set for Shikari included a monstrous 24 songs in an almost two hour long onslaught. With live remixes, live double song mashups and even an impromptu session of Robbie Williams, ‘Angels’, it is clear to see why Shikari are fast becoming a massive band. This band’s live performances are not to be missed at any cost whatsoever.

This setlist included a large section of Shikari’s back catalogue with other fan favourites including The Jester, Juggernauts, Slipshod and the incredible Redshift which was released January 12th.

A particularly special moment would be when Reynolds disappeared to the back of the room where a piano was strategically placed in order to provide the piano versions of ‘Juggernauts and Invincibles’ before choosing a member of the crowd to surf back to the stage with.

After this show (and a 15 mile walk home in the rain due to a missed train!) I honestly believe without a doubt I can say that Enter Shikari are one of the world’s best live bands at this moment in time.

Review by Dillon Grant

Enter Shikari – Corn Exchange, Edinburgh, 19 February 2016

Special props to @_madphoto_ for this picture of me during Sorry You’re Not a Winner

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ABOVE SNAKES Nothing To Lose (indie)
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LEADFINGER The Fall Of Rome (Golden Robot)
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