Dillinger Escape Plan @ Slade Rooms, Wolverhampton – Thursday 7th November 2013


Ever since I caught their half an hour set at Download festival a few years ago, I have to admit, I’ve wanted to see The Dillinger Escape Plan play a smaller venue. They have been widely acknowledged as one of the most energetic live bands on the planet right now and even if you’re not a fan of their music as such, seeing this band live is a must for any fan of hardcore music. In my opinion Dillinger are the best live band out there at the moment, no other band does it quite like them and I don’t think any band could do, what they do, quite as well as they do. Tonight was no different.


To start, as a sort of calm before the storm moment, two post rock bands will play the tiny venue that is the Slade Rooms. I make sure I get to the gig early to catch the first band on this evening. Maybeshewill, hailing from Leicester, just up the road from tonight’s venue,they bring their mix of intricate intertwining piano and guitar based melodies with heavy electronic sample based music to the nearly half full room of people. The sound is spot on already; all the instruments are sounding crystal clear which really helps put across their atmospheric wall of sound. Songs such as, ‘To the skies from a hillside’ and the sample-laden ‘Co-conspirators’ help to show off perfectly what Maybeshewill are trying to do with their music. Epic guitar and piano melodic phrases, teamed with crashing drums and driving bass lines perfectly complement each other. Maybeshewill have definitely made their mark on more than a few fans this evening, myself included.

Next up are the second post rock group of the evening, London based trio, Three Trapped Tigers. Having supported Deftones during their recent February run of England and Scotland, and being often compared to other post rock groups such as 65 Days of Static and And So I Watch You From Afar I was particularly looking forward to this evenings support slot. Unfortunately, due to the sound being unnecessarily loud I had to leave to venue as my ears felt like they might start bleeding. Which was unfortunate as from the first two songs, there mix of mainly electronic sounds and acoustic drums was very original and definitely reminded me of 65 Days of Static. I was particularly impressed with drummer Adam Betts whose ability to meld complex rhythms with electronic drum hits was something I’ve never seen before. Having missed most of their set due to the needlessly loud sound, I returned for their last song to see a rousing reception from the full venue, suggesting that they went down well tonight and have definitely won themselves some new fans.


The Dillinger Escape Plan are finally up, eagerly anticipated by all who have packed out this tiny venue tonight. Entering the stage to pulsing sub bass and two of the brightest strobes I have ever seen, no word from any of the band as they enter straight into their first single, ‘Prancer’ from their critically acclaimed new album ‘One of us is the killer’. A suitable assault on the senses that people have come to accept from a Dillinger gig. Next up, the familiar jarring chords of ‘Farewell, Mona Lisa’ from previous album Option Paralysis, really get the crowd going. Crowd surfing and ,frankly, crazy epileptic style dancing/moshing ensues. Lead singer Greg is already atop the speaker stacks and in the face of the front row of the crowd, who lap up every thing that he is screaming into their faces.

The band continue to show why they are one of the best live bands on the planet, they are such a ridiculously tightly strung unit. Their music is an intense mix of post-hardcore, metalcore and mathcore who,along with bands such as Converge, Dillinger pretty much created .Driving drum beats and super technical guitar leads, provide the perfect tonic to Greg’s harsh screams. During a set that perfectly mixes material from a career spanning five albums, obvious crowd favourites such as ‘Milk Lizard’, ‘Panasonic Youth’ and ‘Black Bubblegum’,show off just how good Greg’s voice is. His vocals go from ear shattering screams to perfectly high singing in songs like ‘Black Bubblegum’.


The middle of the set sees a few of the new tracks get an airing and the crowd lap it up singing back every word. Every member of the band has such huge personalities you’re never sure which one to keep your eyes on. Walking on the hands of the audience, while constantly changing rhythms and playing licks that most guitarists could only dream of playing. All of this whilst having a constant deranged look, explains why Ben Weinman has been consistently named as one of the best metal guitarists around. With drummer Billy Rymer playing complex polyrhythms and some of the quickest, most precise drumming that I have ever witnessed.


The Dillinger Escape Plan have so much talent across the board that no other band could touch them in a live setting. They absolutely destroyed the Slade Rooms this evening. If you ever get the chance, no matter what setting, go see this band, you will most definitely not be disappointed.

Review by Francis Sebestjanowicz
Photos by Steve Gerrard

About Author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *