Asking Alexandria + Of Mice & Men + While She Sleeps @ Birmingham Academy2, 3rd May 2011


While She Sleeps are a strange addition to this line-up, their metal tinged hardcore much more guttural and rough around the edges than the highly polished and produced sound of the other bands. However they take the stage by storm, it’s clear there’s a few people here that are already fans.


Hitting the crowd with pounding hardcore anthems like ‘The North Stands For Nothing’ gets the crowd moving early in their set, and even singing along before the end. They’re a little lost in the big room however, a band like this really suits a more intimate venue, one where they can get up-close and violent.

That said, the frontman still climbed the barrier into the pit to join the fans for the last song.


Again, Of Mice & Men seem to have quite a fanbase in the room, despite this being only their second trip to UK in their short time as a band. Their sound is a lot more melodic metalcore than WSS but it works with this audience, who sing along every time the clean vocalist approached his mic. It’s very energetic on stage, with the frontman often dipping down to scream in the faces of the front row.

The reaction at the end of each song is a testament to how well a band can do, just from one album. Whenever there’s singing, the crowd comes alive, singing the words right back to them.


The tension grows before Asking Alexandria heads on stage, so when the lights finally go down, the scream is almost painful.

This is a UK band that seem to spend most of the their time in the US, so when they return, it’s a big party. And they seem to well up for it, they’ve lost the all black, and had some haircuts since their last tour, and they look happier for it. There’s a lot of movement on stage, but it’s a little more relaxed and natural, like they’re really enjoying every second on stage.


The frontman wanders about the stage at times, just messing with bits and pieces. It’s obvious he’s chilled out when he speaks, chatting about absolute nonsense at some points. Even the guitarist calls him out on it. It gets to a point where the dick jokes are just making them seem like kids, more like watching an old Blink-182 concert than a metalcore band.

The music is still metalcore, but polished up and given a nice pop finish, so it sells well to the masses. It’s a sound that works for them, and is well suited to this kind of venue. Nothing mind-blowing but a fun show to watch none the less.

Review – Ben Duff
Photos – Katja Ogrin

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